May 03, 2013
Derek Osborne has resigned as the National Insurance Board's (NIB) actuary, but said yesterday his decision has nothing to do with the controversial forensic report concerning NIB's finances. Osborne confirmed in an interview with The Nassau Guardian that he handed in his resignation last Friday, though it takes effect three months from the date he submitted it. Though his three-year contract with the company is not set to expire until next May, Osborne said his decision stemmed from wanting to move on after a long career - nearly two decades - with NIB. "I resigned and gave 90 days notice period as required by the contract, and I am still there, they have not indicated that I should leave early so I am still at work," he said. "I have been there for 18 years.
I just completed my third actuarial review, which is a very important analysis of the National Insurance Fund. I submitted the final report about a month ago." When asked whether his resignation was tied to a forensic audit recently completed by Grant Thornton (Bahamas), Osborne said, "Not at all. I was not questioned, I was not involved with the investigation and my work was separate from the investigation." Late last year, Prime Minister Perry Christie said he wanted an independent actuarial review of the National Insurance Fund. He said it would give the country assurance that the fund is secure and can sustain payouts in the long term.
A review is required every five years in accordance with the National Insurance Act. While he could not go into detail about his review yesterday, Osborne said his concern for NIB relates to the longevity of the fund. "NIB needs to find ways to reduce costs and increase collections," he said. "I made several recommendations in the actuarial review, which is not yet public and so I won't go into them now, but they are very similar to the those that were made in the previous actuarial review. "At the end of the day NIB needs to ensure that it collects all the revenue that it can from employers, employed people, and it spends money only when it has to; operating as efficiently as possible and investing funds as prudently as possible."
Osborne, a well respected social security actuary, consults several Caribbean and international companies. He said he expects to be doing more consultancy and expand his businesses in the future. Asked whether he has maintained a relationship with former NIB Chairman Gregory Moss and former NIB Director Algernon Cargill, Osborne said though he "never had a relationship with Moss", he has worked with Cargill for around three years.
Cargill was placed on leave pending the outcome of the audit. He filed suit against NIB and Moss. Cargill remains on administrative leave and receives his full pay with benefits, according to Minister of Labour and National Insurance Shane Gibson. Moss was fired in early January after he issued a press release, suggesting that Christie and Gibson had failed to properly defend him against allegations made against him. The probe into NIB was trigged after Moss made serious accusations against Cargill in a 22-page letter last November.
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