The Chief Executive of a local asset management firm, Strategic Wealth, Nadine Davies has said that intervention is required to ensure that the trustees of retirement funds are equipped with the necessary skills to suitably guide and advise on the sustainability of these funds.
Davies, who was speaking at workshop organised by his company in the capital Gaborone pension fund trustees are finding themselves with more responsibility and accountability than ever before.
“The attendance level showed that trustees are indeed serious about their roles and that there is a need for platforms such as this where trustees, principal officers and stakeholders can come together to dialogue and learn” said Davies
Carlos Amaral Sasfin legal and compliance expert explained that “Trustees need to take their roles seriously and ensure they understand what is expected of them. They are responsible to protect the assets of the pension fund and the interests of the members and must ensure that their fund invests well so that the members are able to retire” he added.
Amaral further noted that trustees needed to understand the personal risks of being in the role and needed to protect themselves by doing a good job, by not tolerating any conflict of interest and by ensuring their fund was adequately insured. Being a trustee is increasingly less a token or honorary role and more about professionally managing the business and investment affairs of a pension fund.
The workshop also touch based on global investment practices and on how to construct investment portfolios to reduce investment risk and enhance returns.
The workshop featured speakers from First National Bank Botswana, Sasfin, Allan Gray, Botswana Insurance Fund Management (BIFM), Investec and Kgori Capital. Attendees included representatives from- the boards of retirement funds, asset managers, fund administrators, life insurance companies and the NBFIRA.
Strategic Wealth is a 100 percent citizen owned asset consult providing services to retirement funds in Botswana for more than 10 years and prides itself as working as a partner with fund trustees rather than just being a service provider.