“It is nine days to the end of the amnesty period that the Fund had initially announced. However, during the last three weeks, we have received numerous requests from many employers to extend the registration. We are therefore glad to announce a deadline up to June 30, 2023, to enable them make necessary arrangements,” Ayota said.
Sections 7 and 13A of the amended NSSF Act introduced mandatory contributions by all workers regardless of the size of the enterprise or the number of employees.
Section 7(2) provides that “every employer, irrespective of the number of employees, shall register with the Fund as a contributing employer and shall make regular contributions for his or her employees in accordance with this Act and regulations made under this Act.”
Previously the NSSF had set May, 30 as the deadline for all employers to remit workers’ contributions or face punishment.
However, on Wednesday, the acting NSSF Managing Director said this deadline had been extended after requests by a number of employers.
Ayota also explained that the Fund has established partnerships with many government agencies to ensure that employers first regularize their status with NSSF before they do business with them.
“We are establishing partnerships with all regulatory agencies to ensure that before any entity is licensed, they have a clearance certificate from NSSF that proves their registration and compliance with the NSSF Act,” he noted.
Speaking on Wednesday, the Minister for Gender and Social Development , Betty Amongi applauded NSSF for implementing the mass registration drive and pledged that her ministry will support the Fund’s efforts to expand social security coverage.
“Government of Uganda recognizes that social protection is a critical pre-requisite for achieving national development goals and also recognizes the need to guarantee social security to the population and to provide assistance to people who are vulnerable either by age, social class, location, disability, gender, disaster or who do not earn any income in order to promote equity,” Among noted.
Uganda has a total labour force of 16.3 million people and a working population of 13.9 million.
Out of the working population, 7.9 million are employed and 6 million are engaged in subsistence production for own consumption, according to the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development.
“As a country, we can no longer blame archaic legislation because the new law has not only expanded the social security landscape but has also empowered the Fund to innovate and introduce new products to appeal to all segments of the working population irrespective of their income levels,” Amongi said.
For a long time, some employers had been excluded by the old NSSF law to save for their employees, but the new NSSF law now allows everyone to save for their retirement.