Parliament yesterday approved the formula for the payment of disability pension to members of the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces. Presenting the Government motion, the Minister of Defense Pallo Conteh said there was no realistic formula to compute pension in respect of the Wounded in Action prior to the war. It was against that he said his Ministry had no alternative but to develop a formula for the circulation of disability pensions in favor of service personnel. The disability formula combines the standard formula with the gratuity formula in order to achieve a unified solution. It can also give a final pension greater than the final basic salary, but the length of service and level of disability is the deciding factor.
The motion explains that if a soldier is 80% disabled, he is incapable of further service and as confirmed by the Ministry of Finance on March 3, 2008, the current formula ensures that an officer or soldier that completes a full career of 37years will not receive a standard pension greater than 55.5% of their final annual basic salary.
The motion further estimates that a Sergeant in the army who took 240 months of service will have the annual standard pension as Le 794,869.20 whereas that Sergeant who took the same 240 months of service but is 50% disabled, the annual disability pension will be Le 4, 967,932. Responding to the motion, Hon (Rtd) Capt. Abdulrahman Kamara of APC referred to it as a novel solution to the problems of the wounded in Action and said it was an indication of recognition of those that have served in the army.
Chief Bai Kurr Kanagbaro Sanka III appealed to the armed forces not to be called again sobels and called on government to provide facilities for the armed forces whilst Chief Rev Yovonnie said such motion will instill the spirit of those serving in the force.
Hon Moinina Conteh of SLPP asked that it be ensured that the affected benefits from it whilst disability activist, Hon Julius Cuffie of APC said those disabled in service ought to be recognized.