By Obioma C. Appolos
In recognition of the importance of a motivated staff towards galvanizing and strengthening the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) for efficiency and effective discharge of its statutory responsibilities, the Fund has showered accolades on 83 members of its staff and 5 employers whom it said have immensely contributed to the success of its Employee Compensation Scheme (ECS).
Held in Abuja on Tuesday, 16th April 2019, the Fund at its maiden Managing Director/CE Excellence Award 2018, an initiative of the current Managing Director/Chief Executive Mr Adebayo Somefun, praised and described it staff members as the engine behind the successes of NSITF, adding that they deserve the best commendation and reward for their hardworking and tireless efforts towards making the fund efficient and effective on its duties.
In his words at the highly appreciated award, Mr. Somefun said; “The intention is to motivate the staff . To enhance their productivity. Not only to recognize them but to reward them. They have been doing a lot and it is only nice that when people are working hard, you recognise and reward them.
“Like I told them that excellence is not that you are the best, but it is doing the best. Excellence is doing the ordinary in extra-ordinarily way. Excellence is doing the uncommon in an uncommon way. All we have come to do here is to celebrate our own. To let them know that somebody somewhere is watching their performance. And when you reward them, they do better. So we will reward the more and I know that they will work more hard and the Fund in turn will be more efficient for service to the people”
He also added, “The employers were also rewarded…and it is our away of encouraging them. The idea is to let them know that we also acknowledge and reward employers who have been faithfully contributing to the Fund, because they have been helping us to ensure that our aims and objectives are kept afloat. I am sure that those who have not been complying would comply when they see that compliance to the Fund is actually rewarding. Because ours is not in going about taking them to court. It is a social security outfit, so what we do is to persuade them. It is when persuasion fails we might now result to the law, that is to take them to court.”
While Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC), Nigeria-Ghana International School Kuje Abuja, British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) and Julius Berger Nigeria PLC are awarded employers’ excellence award, Mrs Erebi Maria Kia, Best performing Branch Manager and Odang Little B, Excellence and Integrity were specially awarded among the 83 others.
Speaking to journalists, Erebi Maria Kia, said “I feel elated for winning the award and I am very grateful to management for the recognition. The award has already poised me to work harder. And I appreciate my team of staff who put in their very best beyond the call of duty, because their efforts is what manifested to this award.
“Our magic is commitment, hard work and doing what is required of us in an extraordinarily way. It is also stepping up our responsibility to a greater height, and this involves sharing ideas with my team and working with them with respect and humility and actually leading by example. I thank my team members for working very hard and I urge them to work harder because we are yet to reach the landmark.”
Kia also told journalists that “to be in compliance with NSITF Employee Injury Compensation scheme is that you have registered with the scheme, and you are regularly remitting your compensation quota. We have a lot of employers who have registered with us but do not remit their compensation accordingly.”
Meanwhile, the Fund’s Lagos Regional Manager Mrs Olufunke Aleshinloye, who expressed joy over the initiation of the award by Mr Somefun, said “We are proud of our accomplishment and we are not relenting because we have much work to do. We appreciate the MD for this thoughtful award, I know it will motivate our staff members to work harder.
“We have to improve on not just collection but on the compliance level. We want more employers to be actively involve with the employee compensation scheme by paying contributions but also by making claims.
“Our challenges lies on reaching employers. Many employers have registered with us but we have challenge in locating them. And this is because they contacted us through phone call. When you register with us, within 24 hours, we go to the address that the employer provided to us to ensure that you are actually there. And the reason we move quickly to locate the employer’s address, is simply to make it easy for us to follow up on the employer.
“We earlier had a challenge of employers reaching due to proximity because Initially we do not have many office in Lagos, but currently we have 9 branches across Lagos. And this has made it very easy for employers to find us at the nearest branch close to them. So we are calling on employers to come forward because the scheme is a more rewarding one to their companies.
“Currently in Lagos, we are doing media broadcast on Traffic Road twice a week just to put people in the know of what the NSITF is about and what the Employers Compensation scheme is about and it’s usefulness.”