South Africa’s government workers contribute money to the Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF). The GEPF has more than 1.2 million members and around 473 312 pensioners and beneficiaries. It is estimated that it has combined assets worth R2.09 trillion.
However, the GEPF says that around R760 million remain unclaimed. Some of these claims are from the 1980’s and 1990’s.
Musa Mabesa, GEPF’s Principal Executive Officer says the fund is currently rectifying any issues with members who may not be entitled to this money as they may currently be in service, The fund is encouraging its members to ensure that their details are up to date on their website.
Mabesa says having accurate data remains a challenge. This, as the members are unable to be traced along with them not filling out the relevant nomination forms. When members don’t complete these nomination forms, the fund is not always able to trace the beneficiaries.
He said “we struggle to reconcile some of the data that we have on our systems with what they’ve submitted. Sometimes there are bank validation rejections where the banking details they’ve provided to us are incorrect. In other instances there are disputed cases where the members’ beneficiaries are in dispute themselves. The other issues relate to tax administration matters”.
All the above mentioned scenarios can prevent the fund from processing payments to beneficiaries.
Mabesa says that if a member of the fund passes away, spouses or nominated beneficiaries will be entitled to some support. He adds that tracing agents are appointed to determine whether individuals are entitled to benefits. This will occur if an individual claims their parent worked for a government institution but does not have the relevant paperwork available.
You can enquire about benefits that may be entitled to members using the following avenues.