TWELVE former teachers and their next of kin have come forward to claim their contributions under the Teachers’ Provident Fund (KWSG).
Yayasan Guru Tun Hussein Onn (YGTHO) chief executive officer Zahirudin Mohammad Hanif said he was happy with the number of retired teachers who have come forward so far.
“I am positive more will come forward to collect their money,” he said when contacted.
YGTHO said in a statement that some RM13.58mil in contributions under the KWSG have yet to be claimed by 1,910 retired teachers under the scheme.
Zahirudin said that various efforts to trace the teachers such as placing advertisements in newspapers had been carried out since 2007 but failed due to various factors such as a change in addresses and contact details.
It was reported that he said the 1,910 served as teachers from 1950 to 2004.
“Based on our records, some of the older ones are already 90 years old,” he said.
KWSG was set up in 1962 to safeguard the interests and benefit teachers serving under the Unified Teaching Service (UTS).
He said that in 1972 when the “Opsyen Gaji Aziz” was introduced, contributors opted to leave the KWSG and joined the new scheme for teachers under the UTS.
The amount could not be withdrawn by contributors until they retired, he added.
On Dec 31, 2015, he said KWSG was abolished and replaced with the YGTHO. The unclaimed funds were surrendered to the Unclaimed Money Registrar under the Finance Ministry.
Zahirudin urged the family members of teachers who have passed away to collect the funds.
“They only have to bring along letters or documents to prove they are related to the deceased. This document must be endorsed by a Grade A civil servant or a village head.
“We will arrange for everything else, including how to go about claiming the money from the Unclaimed Money Registrar,” he added.
Zahirudin stressed the claims must be done either by the retired teachers themselves or their family members.
National Union of the Teaching Profession (NUTP) secretary-general Harry Tan said there could be many reasons why such a huge amount of money remained unclaimed for years.
“It is a noble effort by YGTHO to locate the teachers,” he said when contacted.
Zulkiflee Mohammad, 42, rang up the YGTHO’s office to collect his late father’s contributions.
“We were shocked and surprised when we read the news.
“My father was a primary school teacher in the 1970s. We did not know he had unclaimed money,” he said.
Zulkiflee received some RM9,000 under the KWSG, all of which, he said, would go to his mother.
“It is up to her as to what she wishes to do with it.
“I would encourage retired teachers who have yet to claim their money to do so. It will come in handy for their daily expenses,” he added.
Norkhailah Rahela Mohd Noor said she did not know when she would claim the money.
“I plan to renovate my kitchen, although I do not know how much my contributions will amount to,” said the retired 76-year-old teacher.
For more information, call Yayasan Guru Tun Hussein Onn at tel 03 2274 6037 or visit its office at Level 13, Wisma KWSG, Jalan Kampung Attap, Kuala Lumpur.