Teachers belonging to the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) will from February next year pay GHC20 more on their monthly contributions to the Teachers Fund. The teachers currently pay a monthly minimum contribution of GHC30 but the National Council of the GNAT has GHC50 as the new monthly contribution from next year.
General manager of the Teachers Fund, Foster Buabeng , who announced this explained that increment in the minimum contribution is in the interest of GNAT members the higher the contribution, the greater the returns on their investments. Currently, the Fund has an asset of GHC750million, with an average of 120 per cent return on contributions. Members’ contribution stands at GHC314,726,382 with a total of 196,234 members throughout the country.
Managers of the Fund say beyond the monthly minimum contribution, members have the option of contributing more than the minimum amount. As the second largest pension fund, the Teachers Fund was set up in 1998 by GNAT as a retirement supplement scheme for its registered members across the country and with an initial contribution of 10 pesewas at the time, it has gone up to GHC30 and set to increase to GHC50 from 2017.
“The teachers’ fund was set up to provide retirement supplement, lifestyle enhancing facilities in the form of loans, to engage in property development and real estate activities,” Mr Buabeng said. Mr Buabeng observed there are several benefits associated with those who choose optional contribution package. He urged members of GNAT to take advantage of the Teachers’ Fund to improve on their livelihoods .
Board chairman of the Fund ,George Asare Yamoah, said contributors have since its inception benefited from loan facilities to fund accommodation, education, vehicle purchase and investments in their personal businesses. He said they are hopeful the Fund would reach a one billion-cedi target in January 2017 Acting National President of GNAT, Philipa Larson, said they have negotiated for the upward increase of salary by 12 per cent next year.
She assured of their commitment to support teachers to live better life and called on members to contribute towards the fund. Ms Larson has appealed to GNAT members not to involve themselves in partisan politics ahead of the general elections. Meanwhile, GNAT has rewarded five members of its members who are to retire this year .