SATURNIA REGNA PENSION FUND – REGISTERED TRUSTEES
22 September 2020
700 EX-KCM RETIREES PENSION BENEFIT
The Trustees of Saturnia Regna Pension Fund (“Saturnia”) have noted with dismay the statements issued by Mr. Ilunga Kasompe supposedly on behalf of the 700 Ex- KCM Miners regarding their pension benefits during their press briefing held on 20th of September 2020.
Mr Ilunga Kasompe made the following allegations at the press briefing;
- Over 700 ex KCM miners were members of the Saturnia Regna Pension Fund
- Saturnia was withholding pension benefits for these ex-miners against their will and this has caused a lot of hardship for them.
- Mr Hakainde Hichilema was unfairly holding back their pension as shareholder in the Fund and that he owned Saturnia.
- Saturnia Regna Pension Fund changed the law so as not to pay pensioners all their pension benefits.
The Trustees of the Fund would like to advise the members of the Fund, sponsoring employers, other keys stakeholder and the general public that the above allegations are untrue and un-substantiated. The actual position on the above matters is as follows;
The Ex KCM Miners demanding pension payment are not members of Saturnia. However, it is true that employees of KCM Plc participated in Saturnia from 2000 until 2007 when the company decided to segregate and set up their own stand-alone pension scheme. Therefore, all employees of KCM plc are accounted for under their own company pension fund which operates as a stand-alone Pension Scheme. The business of the KCM Plc Pension Trust Scheme (the Scheme), its assets (including those left in Saturnia for investment purposes), payment of member benefits and other administrative matters is presided and overseen by the Trustees of the KCM Plc Pension Scheme.
Saturnia is a pension trust fund created under the Perpetual Succession Act of the laws of Zambia and does not have shareholders. The over 35 000 contributing members are the owners of the pension scheme and Trustees hold these assets on their behalf. Therefore, it’s not possible under the law for any individual to own or hold shares in a trust such as Saturnia.
On Payment of Pension Benefits
Saturnia has not withheld any pension benefits unnecessarily to any of its Members. All benefits are paid within the stipulated time as long as a member has filed in their claim form and meets the necessary conditions under the law and scheme rules. There is no outstanding claim on record at this point in time that has been brought to our attention. The Trustees would be happy to receive any such information on unsettled claims to enable the resolution of such cases.
In Zambia, the law that prescribes how pensions are to be paid is clause (vii) of the Income Tax Act Cap 323 of the Laws of Zambia. This law is to be complied with by all pension schemes in Zambia.
On Changing the Law
Saturnia has not changed any law. All pension payments in Zambia are governed by the Zambian laws. The same law applies to all pension funds that are managed in Zambia. No fund is able to change the law as all laws are Acts of Parliament and only Parliament can amend them.
We truly believe that the above statement helps to clarify the issues identified above. Those needing more information on the same should feel free to consult the Pensions and Insurance Authority and Zambia Revenue Authority as the enforcers of the relevant laws relating to pensions.
Saturnia remains the largest multi-employer pension fund in Zambia and the most well diversified fund in terms of its distribution of assets. We would like to thank our Members and the sponsoring employers for their continued support for the fund, despite unsubstantiated and unwarranted attacks that the Fund has endured over the past few years.
Board Chairperson – Board of Trustees
Saturnia Regna Pension Fund