BES: Pension/ Provident Fund

Updated January 2023

Absa Pension Fund Board of Trustees Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) voting

The Absa Pension Fund Board of Trustees have used BES services in the past. In 2019 BES introduced USSD voting to pensioners with cell phone numbers. The Fund suggested that this method of voting be included for the 2022 Trustee elections which was scheduled from August 2022 until September 2022.

In terms of the Fund Rules, pensioners can vote for up to four candidates of their choice. The Fund was responsible for the nominations process, nomination and voting communication, email and postal ballots, and counting of emailed and postal ballots. EISA was appointed to conduct SMS/USSD voting only. BES provided a competent, agile, and resilient online software infrastructure to enable USSD voting. An updated membership list of 7449 (voters' roll) was received from the Fund and uploaded onto the BES electronic system. BES identified discrepancies in the pensioner membership data list and informed the client accordingly.

Following the successful BES-managed USSD voting between 23 August 2022 and 22 September 2022, BES then declared the final SMS voting tallies to the Fund. As requested by the Fund, BES allowed the Fund to audit the EISA system and SMS voting tallies at the EISA Johannesburg office.

Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) Provident Fund Board of Trustees

The PRASA Provident Fund, a recurring client, contracted BES for the election management of one member trustee during October 2022. The Fund is registered as a privately administered provident fund in terms of the Pension Fund Act (Number 24 of 1956). The Board consists of 14 members, of whom seven are appointed by the employer and seven are elected by members. BES deployed electoral officers to the nine identified voting sites across four provinces where they concluded the nominations and voting phases of the election.

Standard Bank Group Retirement Fund Trustees

The Standard Bank Group Retirement Fund (SBGRF), a recurring client, conducted an election for its member elected board of Trustees. BES applied its suite of technological tools to enable Active members to vote electronically and via email, and Pensioner members through postal votes. As part of its brief, EISA received completed electronic and postal nomination forms and returned mail via the South African Post Office countrywide, set up and fielded a tollfree line, prepared and presented the nominations audit to the Fund, vetted all candidates, received short CVs and prepared a ballot paper with all verified candidates. EISA audited the Fund's voting application system to test its integrity, security, functionality and usability. The Fund made use of the Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) platform the first time in 2021.

Masakhane Member Elected Trustees and Alternate Trustees

The Masakhane Provident Fund is a fund setup for mining employees at the Sibanye Stillwater mine in Rustenburg. Moriting Wealth Managers (Pty) Ltd. EISA was appointed by the Fund to conduct the election of member elected Trustees and Alternate Trustees to sit on its Board of Management. EISA rolled out the election between June and August 2019. Fund members eligible to vote in terms of the Fund Rules participated in the nominations and voting processes. BES successfully managed these elections at four sites at Sibanye Stillwater, namely: Eastern Platinum (EPL), Karee, LPD/Processing/Labs and Western Platinum. EISA developed voting communication which was displayed at the mine. Manual counting of votes in the presence of the observers identified by the Fund, commenced immediately after voting closed at each polling station.

Limpopo Providence Voluntary Group Scheme Board (LPVGSB) NPC by-elections

Registered as a Not-for-Profit Organisation, the LPVGSB, a new client, provides support to its members in the Limpopo province. Only members who fall within the Old Mutual Group Scheme policy holders, code 69272, were eligible to participate in these by elections. The nomination process was managed by the Scheme in terms of the Scheme's regulations. BES conducted the by elections for 2021 in the five Limpopo districts: Capricorn, Sekhukhune, Vhembe, Waterberg, and Mopani. The election was successfully concluded.

South African Local Authorities Pension Fund (SALA) Employer, Employee and South African Police Service (SAPS)

In accordance with the Rules of the Fund, voting was for provincial committees comprising two delegates from each Local Authority in each province. BES successfully managed these elections in all nine provinces between March and April 2018. Three elective meetings were held in each province: the first for the employee representatives, the second for employer representatives and the third for SAPS representatives.

Transent Second Defined Benefit Fund (TSDBF)

EISA was once again appointed to administer elections for the TSDBF Fund, one of the funds in the Transnet group of companies. BES applied its suite of technological tools to allow pensioners to elect four trustees via online postal email, fax and SMS (USSD) voting.

Impala Provident Fund

Impala members at two Lonmin mines, one in Rustenburg and one in Limpopo, voted from June to August 2018 for seven member-elected Trustees and seven Alternate Trustees. EISA conducted successful nominations, mass meetings and voting days at four voting sites North, South and MinPro shafts at Rustenburg mine and Marula mine in Burgersfort, Limpopo. Voting at Marula mine was postponed due to community unrest around the mine and was later concluded.

Since the fund rules provide for special votes, EISA ensured that special voters at the mine hospital and laboratory could cast their votes the day before the general voting day.

Rand Water Provident Fund Board of Trustees

EISA was contracted and successfully concluded the facilitation of the Rand Water Provident Fund Board of Trustees elective process. Fund members were given the opportunity to elect 5 Trustees and 5 Alternate Trustees. The process ran from November 2016 to February 2017. EISA managed the design, printing, delivery, and collection of both the nomination and voting communication along with nomination and ballot boxes to all Rand Water sites around the Johannesburg area. Members voted by means of secret ballot, ballot papers were counted at the EISA Johannesburg office, and the election results sent to the Fund.