The Namibian Government slammed recent reports that circulated which state that government employees will have to retire early as a means to remedy the bloated wage bill and said it is devoid of any truth.
In a statement issued by the Office of the Prime Minister, Cabinet Secretary, George Simataa he stated that early retirement remains only an option for civil servants and is not a necessary requirement.
Simataa said that Government has not adopted any retrenchment policy, nor is it embarking on any form of structural re-alignment of any kind that can be considered “retrenchment”.
He further added that the wage bill issue requires rigorous consideration due to its multiple implications to Government and the economy as well as the impact on skills and experience that might be lost.
“In 2017, a study was conducted on the strategies to contain the public service wage bill. A number of strategies were identified for critical investigation such as large pay-outs for overtime claimed, daily subsistence allowance claims, proper alignment of strategic objectives with organizational structures, the full and effective implementation of performance management, and investigating the viability of reducing early retirement age for civil servants amongst others,” Simataa said.
He added that due to the impact that early retirement by civil servants may have, not only to the sustainability of the Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) but also on service delivery by Government in terms of the potential loss of essential skills, the government has not taken a decision on this matter, and will not do so until the matter has been thoroughly investigated and consultations with relevant stakeholders have been undertaken.
Simataa reacted to a recent media report which allegedly recommended that Government should investigate the possibility of reducing early retirement age from the current age of 55 to 50 years.