Above: Haiti President Michel Martelly
By the Caribbean Journal staff
Haitian President Michel Martelly has inaugurated the new office of the country’s National Old Age Insurance office, the country’s national pension fund, in Petionville.
“This is another victory for the Haitian people, one step closer to improving its well-being and a necessary opening towards creating new opportunities for the upward social mobility of the population,” he said.
Bernard Degraff, the Director General of the NOA, said he believed the new premises symbolize what the country hopes is a reformed office.
The ONA had encountered troubles in recent years, highlighted by the arrest of Sandro Joseph, the director of the agency, after allegations of corruption in 2009.
Degraff said he promised better management of the organization in line with reforms mandated by Martelly.
While the organization has had a deficit of just under $24 million over the last three years, Degraff said he was pleased with a reported 30 percent increase in growth in the last six months through membership fees.
“These new institutional capacities contribute, I believe, to increase the performance of NOA in its benefits to policyholders and to improve the quality of services to the population,” Degraff said.
The Director General also said the new capacities would provide a better framework for an effective implementation of a programme aimed at opening opportunities for loans to small and medium-sized enterprises in Haiti.
Martelly called for cooperation in Haiti’s continued quest to strengthen its institutions, to adapt and to innovate.
“It is to this new vision that I intend to direct all agencies of the country to build a state inclusive of service for all,” he said.