OSCE could be delivering pensions to elderly in occupied Donbas, governor suggests
Head of Ukraine-controlled Donetsk Regional State Administration, Pavlo Kyrylenko, has suggested that the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) could consider delivering pensions to residents of the occupied part of Donbas.
Speaking on Ukrainian Radio, he said there is a clear procedure for pensioners living in the occupied territories of Donbas to receive their payments. They have to cross to the government-controlled territory and undergo an IDing procedure, which is an issue for those physically unable to do this.
"There were proposals from the regional state administrations to attract OSCE experts who would officially confirm that those who are unable to cross the contact line due to physical challenges are actual persons with the right to a pension. International organizations could help us get documents from those territories and forward them to the Pension Fund," he said.
Kyrylenko is convinced the OSCE may take on the function of delivering pensions to the occupied territories.
"This is being worked out. Legislation should be amended to this end. Now the law says people must be ID'ed in person. If a power of attorney is provided, it must be done on Ukrainian territory by a Ukrainian notary (private or public), in line with the Ukrainian legislation," he added.
As UNIAN reported earlier, bill 2083-d, which provides for the payment of pensions to persons residing in the temporarily occupied areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions (eastern Ukraine) and who have not been registered as internally displaced persons (IDPs), was made public on the website of the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament.
The bill stipulates that pensions, which have not been accrued and/or paid since the suspension of funding of the Pension Fund of Ukraine due to armed conflict, temporary occupation, widespread manifestations of violence, human rights violations and emergency situations of a military, natural or man-made nature, shall be paid for the whole period in question.
The explanatory note to the bill says that three-year limits will thus be lifted, including for heirs.
The draft law also facilitates the procedure for the applicants who have fled the conflict zone to prove their right to pensions. They shall no longer be obliged to provide paperwork to back their claims.
Moreover, the bill stipulates the possibility of additional purchasing of the required pensionable service without applying the doubling of a single social security payment.
According to the bill, the payment of pensions to persons who live in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine and are not registered as IDPs shall be carried out by territorial divisions of Ukraine's Pension Fund at the place where they submit their applications. Pensions shall be paid monthly, provided that persons periodically pass the procedure of identification once every six months. The identification procedure for pensioners living in the temporarily occupied territories shall be determined by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine.
The document stipulates that the payment of pensions assigned to persons residing in the temporarily occupied territories shall be carried out directly to such persons. They also may be paid to their representatives acting based on a power of attorney certified by a notary, through a network of institutions and devices of authorized banks or at the location of the organization carrying out payments and delivery of pensions, only in the settlements, where public authorities exercise their powers in full.