Ncube summoned to Parliament over 2009 pension losses

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FINANCE, Economic Development and Investment Promotion minister Mthuli Ncube has been summoned to Parliament to explain the stalled compensation of pensioners and policyholders for losses incurred between 2008 and 2009 during the days of hyperinflation.

Proportional Representation Senator Sesel Zvidzai, said the 2009 move to switch to the use of the United States dollar after the moribund local currency was dumped impacted pensions and insurance policies.

“I rise on a matter of national interest to talk about the erosion of pensions because of hyperinflation over a lengthy period of time starting from 2006 to 2009,” Zvidzai said.

“Zimbabwe suffered unprecedented hyperinflation as we all know. The Government of National Unity undertook a currency reform exercise which replaced the local currency with the United States dollar.

“Pension schemes and insurance companies took advantage of the removal of 25 zeroes from our currency to revalue pensions and insurance policy values.”

Zvidzai made reference to the Justice Smith Commission set up in 2015 to inquire into the loss of pension values and propose remedies to the crisis.

In its report, it confirmed huge losses in the value of pensions.

The commission also recommended compensation for the losses during the period from 1996 to 2007 after many insurance companies short-changed their clients by taking advantage of the country’s inflationary environment.

“I pray that the Finance, Economic Development and Investment Promotion minister does make a statement on the progress registered so far regarding compensating pensioners and policyholders for losses and prejudice that were suffered due to dollarisation in 2009,”

“To commit to pay the compensation in US dollars to vaccinate against repeat losses caused by the spiralling loss of value of our local currency against the US dollar.”

Pensioners who had worked for several years had their pension values reduced to as low as US$0,80c.

They have not been compensated for the losses incurred during the inflationary period of 2008/9. – News Day