The National Social Security Authority (NSSA) has announced various additional benefits expected to add a cheer to its pensioners and beneficiaries during the festive season.
On the monetary front, NSSA beneficiaries will receive a bonus as a 13th cheque together with their November payouts. The compulsory State pension fund increased monthly benefits payouts last month by 25 percent, pegging the minimum pension under the Pension and Other Benefits Scheme (POBS) at the auction rate equivalent of US$45 and US$60 for the Accident Prevention and Workers Compensation Scheme (APWCS).
In addition, beneficiaries who bank with POSB and NBS will with effect from November 13 enjoy zero transaction charges as NSSA moves towards improving the welfare of its pensioners.
NBS and POSB, who are presently offering a revolving facility for income generating projects, account for over 70 percent of NSSA members. NSSA deputy director marketing and communication, Mr Tendai Mutseyekwa, said the authority had also struck a deal with a pharmacy chain, Dis-Pharm, which will offer NSSA pensioners a 10 percent discount.
“NSSA pensioners will enjoy a 10 percent discount across all dispensary and over-the-counter medicinal drugs approved by the MCAZ (Medicines Control Authority of Zimbabwe) to pre-approved beneficiaries of POBS and APWCS,” said Mr Mutseyekwa.
He said the relationship with Dis-Pharm was borne out of NSSA’s partnership with the retail Spar Group that is offering NSSA pensioners a 10 percent discount at selected outlets. Dis-Pharm is a member of the Spar Group.
As part of the partnership, Dis-Pharm will stock up and include in its inventory, all necessary products required by NSSA pre-approved beneficiaries under its two schemes. Dis-Pharm will leverage on Spar’s international contacts to procure drugs and related products at the most competitive prices to maximise on the discount benefit to NSSA beneficiaries.
Dis-Pharm group financial controller, Mr Mitch Tugwete said they were proud to partner NSSA in providing affordable healthcare solutions to pension beneficiaries at discounted Zimbabwe dollar rates.
“Dis-Pharm is a retail pharmaceutical chain that offers affordable health, well-being and beauty solutions for the whole family,” he said.
“The partnership with NSSA will afford pre-approved beneficiaries under NSSA’s schemes to enjoy affordable, tier discounted over-the-counter dispensary and general health solutions.”
The relationship will see NSSA assist the pharmacy chain in its expansion drive by availing space at NSSA properties at mutually agreed commercial rates to provide nationwide access to beneficiaries.
Mr Mutseyekwa said at the start of the year, NSSA promised to prioritise the welfare of pensioners by coming up with innovative ways of augmenting their income.
“While we are doing all we can to improve the monthly pensions with the objective of paying a minimum equivalent to US$60 at the auction rate by January, we know that social security pay-outs will never be adequate, not just in Zimbabwe, but globally,” he said.
“That is why we are working flat out in seeking partnerships that are beneficial to pensioners, our partners and NSSA as a business.”