A debate has arisen from time to time about the problem of accumulating elderly people in the civil service. Many leaders have considered this to be the reason behind the country’s weaker performance of the civil service. It is worth noting that every country strives to have a vibrant civil service through the constant recruitment of younger people.
According to senior government officials, the people who are over 65 refuse to retire due to their lack of information about the benefits of taking the rest. This concern was once highlighted by the Minister of Labour, James Hoth, in September when the country held its first National Economic Conference.
The minister said that South Sudan suffers from an accumulation of aging workforce, as workers who have reached retirement age evade invitations to leave the service. He said most civil servants of retirement age refused to receive pensions.
It is worth noting that the root of the problem lies in the absence of a pension system in the country, and not because of the refusal of the people themselves.
Pensions anywhere in the world are determined according to the number of years the person has served. However, it seems that the government and stakeholders in the civil service need to reconsider their view of retirement pensions. It is not correct to view them as a grant or gift given by the government to people who have reached retirement age to help them manage their lives after stopping work— as much as it is considered an integral part. One of the elements of the country’s overall economic system, which is known as social security, is considered one of the largest sources of savings and investment.
The government must begin establishing a social security system in South Sudan, where a portion of the salaries of public service workers is deducted to meet the costs of life after retirement from service. The country’s economy cannot achieve stable growth without promoting the culture of saving for the future, and the correct investment of savings to achieve development and a better life for people.
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