The National Social Security Fund (NSSF) has announced a 30-day window for all employers to register with NSSF in compliance with the NSSF (Amendment) Act 2022 which introduced mandatory contributions by all workers regardless of the size of the enterprise or number of employees. The campaign is termed ‘Now You Can’.
Speaking at the event, Acting Managing Director, Patrick Ayota said that President Kaguta Museveni assented to the NSSF (Amendment) Act 2022 on the 2nd of January 2022 and it became law. Among the objectives, the amendments are intended to expand social security coverage and strengthen compliance with the law.
“I am pleased to note that since the law was passed, we have seen over 3,200 employers with less than 5 employees register with and contribute to NSSF. We have also noted that a number of employers are still not registered with the Fund,” Ayota said.
He added, “Today we announce a 30-day window effective March 28, 2023, for all employers, irrespective of the number of workers employed, to register with the NSSF. Unregistered employers should take advantage of the next 30 days to avoid penalties.”
Over the next 5 years, the Fund’s target is to register over 50,000 employers and 1,200,000 new members, from the Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) space, voluntary and informal sectors.
“We are targeting both employers and entities for this mandatory drive,” Ayota asserted.
This is an opportunity for every Ugandan worker, formal or informal, to take advantage of the new legal regime. This drive is a multi-stakeholder initiative. All members have an obligation to make social security a reality for all workers in Uganda
Uganda Law Society(ULS) Chief Executive Officer, Okwalinga Moses said expressed appreciation to the Fund for considering ULS as a key stakeholder in the implementation of the NSSF Act, as amended, in particular Sections 7 & 13A, to expand social security coverage. ULS supports the efforts to expand social security.
“One of ULS’s objectives is “to promote the rule of law and human rights protection”. We are glad to be part of the initiatives that promote adherence to the law. The right to social security is of central importance in guaranteeing human dignity for all persons,” Okwalinga said.
He added, “For our members in the legal fraternity, NSSF compliance is already a requirement by the Law Council before a practicing certificate can be issued. The advantages of compliance are very evident so let us comply.”
Mrs. Cecilia Kengoro, Investment Specialist at Private Sector Foundation Uganda, encouraged all employers to register with NSSF to comply with the law. Adding, “We shall work with the Fund to educate and support businesses in Uganda to embrace this call to secure the future of their employees.”
John Walugembe, Director Oxford Green Finance Initiative thanked the Fund for working with the Federation of small and medium-sized businesses in Uganda for the campaign urging that there are opportunities in regularizing registration with NSSF, especially for the SMEs who currently dominate Uganda’s business terrain.
“I urge our members to take advantage of this opportunity provided by the Fund to register so that we are not caught on the wrong side of the law. We shall work with NSSF to educate our members on the benefits, education is vital in this initiative,” Walugembe said.