KARACHI: Chairman Employees Old-Age Benefits Institution (EOBI) Shakeel Ahmed Mangnejo has said that for the convenience of employers, as well as, to encourage more contributions from them, a Self-Assessment Scheme is proposed in the upcoming amendment into the EOBI Act, under which companies to be audited shall be selected by random balloting.
Speaking at a meeting of Site Association of Industry, he informed that EOBI is currently paying PKR 50 billion per annum to more than 400,000 pensioners. “Therefore, everyone should pay a contribution on time @ 13000 minimum wages in the larger interest of their own registered workers.” He suggested to report harassment cases under Section 35 of the Act - a portal for this is already active on their website.
EOBI Chairman announced to make EOBI Helpdesk at SITE Association functional with immediate effect and depute an officer to attend the Helpdesk at least once in a week for better coordination between registered employers and EOBI as well as to resolve issues of members of the Association.
Expressing views on minimum wage & contribution, he asked the industrialists to make payment at Rs. 13,000/- wage and clear the backlog as the EOBI fund is also facing difficulties. He gave the option of instalments to those who are paying contributions of less than 780/- per month to clear their backlog.
Replying to a query from Ex-President Saleem Parekh regarding sharing of EOBI accounts, Chairman EOBI informed that un-audited accounts up to the year 2020, together with minutes of BOT, have been placed on the website of EOBI.
EOBI said that companies whose contributions exceed Rs. 100,000/month would be bound to pay their contributions through EOBI’s automated Facilitation System (FS) from 1st February 2022. This is necessary to maintain an accurate record of registered workers. By March 2022, EOBI is expected to launch its mobile app as well.
President of SITE Association of Industry Abdul Rasheed said that a representative of SITE Association should be taken in the Board of Trustees of EOBI and stressed the need to re-activate EOBI Helpdesk at SITE Association as per past practice. He mentioned that collection targets issued by EOBI should be avoided and inspection of records should be done only once in a year.
He also highlighted the issues being faced by pensioners, particularly widows, in getting pension.
Chairman of Labour Sub-Committee Abdul Kadir Bilwani on this occasion briefed the Chairman EOBI on the issues being faced by the employers and employees of SITE area which in particular included delay in issuance of pension cards, release of pending applications of pensioners for payments, relief in inspection audits given the COVID situation to help industrialists, harassment of industrialists by audit inspectors and unnecessary demand of company financials.
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021