The Board of Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) Provident Fund has been inaugurated with a call on members to work diligently and to be accountable to members at all times.
Mr Ignatius Baffour Awuah, the Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, who made the call, urged members “to make the Trust Deed their Bible… read it every day and use it to the advantage of your members.”
He said, “Manage their affairs very well. If you’ll cheat anybody in this world, it is not that person that is weak and unable to do it on his own because of old age.”
He, however, said looking at the composition of the Board, he was confident that members would have the best service from the board.
The eight-member Board has MTR Ransford Lolih as the Chairman.
Other members are Mr Thomas Tanko Musah, GNAT General Secretary, Ms Helen Akua Oforiwaa Osei, Mr Peter Obeng Nyamekye, Mr Victor de-Graft Etsison, Mr Daniel Tomey Anning, Philip Dela Dzumanu, and Mr Isaac Baah, all officers at GNAT.
Mr Baffour Awuah noted that the Law had made it easier for persons to enrol on tier 3 pension scheme “because as tier 1 and 2 are tax-deductible, tier 3 is equally tax-deductible,” and urged the board to liaise with the appropriate authorities to ensure that their tier 3 contributions are taking out of their lump sums before their tax is worked out.
He also commended GNAT for its vision and the promotion of the Provident Fund and expressed the hope that every member would enrol to achieve the goals.
Mr Lolih, on his part, pledged their preparedness to service members to the best of their knowledge and strength.
He said their experience with the tier 1 pension scheme was not a pleasant one and appealed to the Minister to liaise with the Controller and Accountant General’s Department and the Bank of Ghana to release their funds.
He said as Trustees, they are to accept remittances and reinvest them for the interest of members.
“…but if they are keeping the money, the money is not coming, l think the regulator will have to assist us in this direction going forward so that the Board would operate effectively”.
Reverend Isaac Owusu, the President of GNAT, admonished the Board members to be accountable at all levels to members.
“As Board Chairman, you will be accountable…at NEC meeting, you will be accountable, at Council meetings, you will be accountable, at Conference, you will be accountable…,”
He said: ” In as much as you can have your AGM, we have an interest as an Association to make sure that the contributor who is our member is secured.”
Rev. Owusu, therefore, urged all to be interested in every activity and hold the board accountable, adding that all of you are responsible to make the Provident Fund a success.
“This is our own property and we must hold the Board accountable for better service,” he added.
The GNAT has a membership strength of more than 200,000 and more than 10,000 members are currently enrolled on the scheme.