JOHOR BARU: Only 3,554 people out of 10,000 who qualify for the i-Suri scheme in Johor are taking advantage of the incentive to boost their retirement funds.
The scheme, initiated by the Federal Government and the Employees Provident Fund (EPF), started in August last year. It aimed to ensure single mothers, housewives and widows below the age of 60 would be able to have a retirement fund by the age of 55.
Johor EPF director Mohd Taib Ismail said with a monthly contribution of only RM5, those qualified would be able to receive RM480 government incentive annually.
“The incentive will be added to their total funds for the year and this will increase the dividend they obtain every year.
“But a majority of those who qualify for the incentive are unable to make the annual contribution of RM60, ” he said.
Mohd Taib was speaking during the launching of a collaboration between Johor EPF and bereavement care provider Nirvana Asia Ltd southern region for the i-Suri Scheme held at Sutera Mall.
He said Nirvana southern region pledged to help 33 individuals fulfil the annual contribution that would allow them to get the incentive.
“This is the second time Nirvana southern region has contributed to the i-Suri scheme.
“The company first aided individuals who qualified for the i-Suri scheme in June, ” he said.
Nirvana southern region chief executive officer Tan San Ling, who handed a cheque for RM2,000 to Johor EPF for the i-Suri Scheme, hoped the contribution would help those in need.
She said if the response from those who qualified for the aid improved, Nirvana would consider contributing more.
“This collaboration is also Nirvana southern region’s way of providing for the community and creating awareness for the public on the numerous government aid that they could receive.
“If there are more eligible individuals who register for the i-Suri scheme after this, we would consider giving more funds to EPF to accommodate them as well, ” she added.
In April, EPF announced that it had credited government-approved incentive payments totalling RM9.51mil to the accounts of 49,857 i-Suri members nationwide for 2018.
In addition to the government’s RM40 incentive, eligible i-Suri members can enjoy the same benefits as other EPF members, such as annual dividends on their retirement savings, withdrawals of EPF savings, incapacitation benefit and death benefit.
The pension fund also encourages more housewives or female head of household, whose profiles are listed in the National Database on Poverty (eKasih), to register for i-Suri.