Original Research

Universal old-age pension: Can Africa overcome it’s challenges?

Paul-Sewa Thovoethin, Jobson O. Ewalefoh
Africa’s Public Service Delivery & Performance Review | Vol 6, No 1 | a232 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/apsdpr.v6i1.232 | © 2018 Jobson oseodion Ewalefoh | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 June 2018 | Published: 15 November 2018

About the author(s)

Paul-Sewa Thovoethin, Department of Political Science, Lagos State University, Nigeria
Jobson O. Ewalefoh, Department of Development Studies, University of South Africa, South Africa

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Background: Social security is an important human right recognised in several international legal instruments and by non-state actors and most countries of the world. In Africa, as a result of the increasing number of aged people in most countries, the need to implement social security in the form of old-age pension schemes and workers’ compensation remains compelling.

Aim: The aim of this article is to examine the nature of old-age pension in selected countries in Africa.

Setting: The article takes a critical look at the nature of old-age pension schemes in some African countries. It observes that while most countries in the global north take social security seriously especially as it relates to the aged, in most countries on the continent of Africa, social security schemes are taken for granted.

Methods: The article is qualitative in nature, it relies on secondary sources of data.

Results: The findings shows that the implementation of old-age pension and workers compensation are especially taken for granted in most countries in Africa with the exception of South Africa that has old age pension shemes for both formal amd informal sectors.

Conclusion: It concludes that the implementation and management of social security systems require quite complex institutions which, again, are not available in most of these countries.


social security; pension; pension fund administrator; old age; retirement; formal and informal sector


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