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Why teachers risk missing out on retirement benefits

Education
TSC CEO Nancy Macharia. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

Thousands of teachers risk missing their retirement benefits owing to lack of their details in the government system.

Teachers Service Commission blamed this on improper registration with the National Social Security Fund (NSSF).

The commission said many teachers in basic education across the country have failed to register with the NSSF, jeopardising their privilege to retirement benefits.

TSC called on teachers to update their details before June 21 to secure their benefits.

Siaya TSC County Director Gideon Nandi revealed that remittances of the affected teachers are currently held in suspense accounts due to lack of NSSF account numbers.

“We have over 4,000 teachers both in primary and secondary who are contributing to NSSF but their remittances are lying in the suspense account due to them not having NSSF account numbers,” he said.

Consequently, TSC has issued a circular dated June 12, urging all affected teachers to promptly visit the nearest NSSF office for registration.

Once registered, the teachers are required to submit their NSSF numbers to their respective TSC Sub County Directors for further processing.

“All teachers are therefore required to visit the nearest NSSF office for registration purposes. Upon registration ensure you submit your NSSF number to your respective TSC Sub County Director for onward transmission to TSC Headquarters,” Nandi said.

The commission further asked newly enrolled teachers into the fund but haven't updated their records to do so.

“Those already registered should obtain their latest NSSF statements and bring to the attention of the Commission any errors in such statements,” Nandi said.

Retirement benefits for teachers in the public service are outlined in their appointment letters, serving as an incentive for their dedicated service to the state.

Upon attaining the mandatory retirement age of 60, teachers are expected to apply for their benefits, with the NSSF membership card being a crucial document in the process.

The provident fund system, managed by the government, operates through monthly contributions equivalent to 12 per cent of an employee's salary, split equally between the employee and employer.

Recent adjustments have seen an increase in the lower limit tier 1 contributions, affecting the monthly contributions of teachers accordingly.

Effective February, lower limit tier 1 was pegged at Sh7, 000 up from Sh6, 000.

This category of teachers contributes Sh420 up from Sh320, with the employer contributing equal amount totaling to Sh840 per month. Subsequently, the upper limit is at Sh29,000 with each contributing Sh1,740.

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