PUBLIC SERVANTS SOCIAL SECURITY AGENCY ESTABLISHMENT REGULATION No. 203/2011


brief note

The Public Servants Social Security Agency is established by the Council of Ministers to administer Public Servants’ Pension scheme. Unlike Private Organizations Employees Social Security Agency it is not a newly formed agency. Previously it was known as Social Security Agency and according to article 13 of this regulation, the rights and obligations of the Social Security Agency are now transferred to this agency.  Such transfer in effect repeals the establishment proclamation of the social security agency. This raises a very interesting issue regarding the mode of repeal in Ethiopia.

The social security agency was initially established under this name by Social Security Authority Establishment Proclamation No. 38-1996.  Again it was re-established by Social Security Agency Re-establishment Proclamation No.495/2006.  This proclamation expressly repeals   Proclamation No. 38-1996.   Now Proclamation No.495/2006 itself is repealed and this time not by a proclamation or by the legislature (i.e. House of People’s Representatives.

When the current regulation  (No. 203/2011)   establishes   the Public Servants Social Security Agency and at the same time transfers the rights and duties of the former Social Security Agency, this means in effect, the establishing  proclamation of the social Security Agency  (which is a primary legislation) is repealed by a regulation, which is a secondary legislation.  So now, the issue is whether a law made by the elected legislative organ  could be repealed by the council of Ministers i.e. an executive organ?    Clearly not.

The newly re-established Public Servants Social Security Agency is a single agency with the responsibility of  administering pension scheme of all federal and regional public servants including pension of the defense forces and the police. It is clear that an agency sitting in the capital city and having only a head office in Addis Ababa, will not be able to carry out its tasks without having branch offices in the regional states. Article 3 of the regulation makes the establishment of a branch a discretion. This fails to take in to consideration the complexities  of administrative activities and the scope of Public Servants’ Pension Proclamation No. 714/2011.

Additionally, collecting pension contribution, making pension payments and quickly responding to the complaints and requests of beneficiaries and the respective government organs requires establishing branch offices legally empowered to make an administrative decision within their scope. Therefore establishing a branch office is a mandatory condition for an efficient and effective system of pension administration.  In practice the previous social security agency has branch offices in most of the regions. But, the issue is more than the actual existence of the branches.

As a minimum requirement the establishing regulation should establish one branch office in each of the regional states and most importantly should specify its powers and duties and should clearly identify matters falling within the branch office. In the absence of clear mandate a physical existence by itself will not help to solve the problem of pension administration

Here is the text of the regulation. You can also download the pdf version.

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PUBLIC SERVANTS SOCIAL SECURITY AGENCY ESTABLISHMENT REGULATION No. 203/2011

COUNCIL OF MINISTERS REGULATION No. 203/2011

COUNCIL OF MINISTERS REGULATION TO PROVIDE FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE PUBLIC SERVANTS SOCIAL SECURITY AGENCY

This Regulation is issued by the Council of Ministers in accordance with Article 5 and 34 of the Definition  of Powers and Duties of the Executive Organs of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Proclamation No. 691/2010

1. Short Title
This Regulation may be cited as the “Public Servants Social Security Agency Establishment Council of Ministers Regulation No. 203/2011.

2. Establishment

1/The Public Servants Social Security Agency (hereinafter “the Agency”) is hereby established as an autonomous federal government agency having its own juridical personality.

2/The Agency shall be accountable to the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs .

3. Head Office

The Agency shall have its Head Office in Addis Ababa Head Office and may have branch offices elsewhere as necessary.

4. Objective

The objective of the Agency shall be to strengthen and expand public servants social security programs.

5. Powers find Duties

The Agency shall have the powers and duties:

1/ implement public servants social security laws, regulations and directives;

2/  establish efficient and effective system to implement the public servants pension scheme;
3/ establish a system for the collection of public servants pension contributions, ensure that pension contributions are collected by the appropriate organs in time and in. the correct amount, supervise the implementation of the system by employers and, where necessary, audit their documents and records by requiring their submission or through site visits;

4/ administer public servants pension funds and assets related thereto;

5/collect in advance and maintain records of evidentiary -data that entitle public servants to pension benefits;

6/take legal actions against public offices and individuals who fail to pay pension contributions, maintain accounts of contributions and furnish required documents and information on time;

7/determine the adequacy and validity of evidentiary data submitted in connection with claims [0 public servants pension entitlements, as well as the types and amounts of benefits , aJ.1d effect payments of benefits;

8/ decide on claims related to pension rights and benefits of public servants;

9/ invest public servants pension funds in treasury bonds and other secured investments specified by directives issued ‘by the Ministry of Finance and Economic’ Development;

10/cause periodical actuarial study and review of public servants pension funds;

11/ Undertake studies to strengthen public servants pension programs, submit the studies to the government and implement same upon approval;

12/ issue directives on maters that come within its powers and duties;

13/ own property, enter into contracts, sue and be sued in its own name;

14/ carry out such other activities as may be necessary for the fulfillment of its objective,

6. Organization or the Agency

The Agency shall have:

1/ a Board of management  (hereinafter the “Board”)

2/ Director General and, as may be necessary, Deputy Director Generals to be appointed by the government; and

3/ the necessary staff.

7. Members of the Board
1/ Members of the Board, including the chairperson, shall be appointed by the government, and their number shall be determined as may be necessary.

2/ The Director General of the Agency shall be member and secretary of the Board.

8. Powers and Duties of the Board

1/ The board shall oversee and supervise operations of the Agency.

2/ Without limiting the generality of sub article ( I) of this Article, the Board shall have the powers and duties to:

a) approve the strategy, plan, budget and performance report of the Agency;

b) submit to the government, for approval, general policy matters regarding the public servants pension scheme and the funds;

c) approve directives of the Agency to be issued pursuant to sub-article (12) of Article 5 of this Regulation.

9. Meetings of the Board

1/ The Board shall meet once in every three months; provided, however, that it may meet at any time as may be required.

2/ There shall be a quorum where more than half of the members .are present at a meeting of the Board.

3/ Decisions of the Board shall be passed by majority votes of the members present at a meeting; provided, however, that the Chairperson shall have a casting vote in case of a tie;

4. Without prejudice to the provisions of this Article, the Board may adopt its own rules of procedure.

10. Powers and Duties of the Director General
1/ The Director General shall be the chief executive officer of the Agency and shall, subject to the general directives of the Board, direct and administer the activities of the Agency.

2/ Without limiting the generality stated in sub· article {l) of this Article, the Director General shall:
a) exercise the powers and duties of the

Agency specified in Article 5 of this Regulation;

b) employ and administer employees of the . Agency in accordance with the federal civil

service laws;

c) prepare and submit to ,the Board the strategy, plan and budget of the Agency and implement same upon approval;

d) effect expenditure in accordance with the approved budget of the Agency;

e) represent the Agency in all its dealings with third parties;

f)submit performance and financial reports of the Agency to the Board and, upon approval, to the concerned government bodies.

3/ The Director General may delegate part of his powers and duties to the officers and other employees of the Agency to the extent necessary for the efficient performance of the activities of the Agency

11. Budget

The Agency’s budget shall be allocated from the

pension funds,

12. Books of Accounts

1/ The Agency shall keep complete and accurate books of accounts,

2/ The books of accounts and financial documents of the Agency shall be audited annually by the Auditor General or by auditors appointed by him.

13. Transfer of Rights and Obligations
The rights and obligations of the Social Security Agency re-established under Proclamation No. 495/2006 are hereby transferred to the Agency.

14. Effective Date
This Regulation shall come into force on the date of publication in the Federal Negarit Gazeta.

Done at Addis Ababa, this 25″ day of March, 2011.

MELES ZEN A WI
PRI ME MINISTER OF TH E FEDERAL DEMOC RATIC

REPUBLIC OF ETHIOPIA

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