Enrolment blues? GSIS educational loan at P4k/member

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Members of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) have until December 28 to avail themselves of an educational loan that would help cover school expenses in the current academic year.

Robert G. Vergara, GSIS president and general manager, said in a statement that all active members are entitled to a loan of P4,000, regardless of their salary grade.

The loan is payable in five years with an interest of 6 percent, and payment will start three months after the grant.

Vergara said the pension fund will neither require electronic certification from the employer nor any service fee for the loan.

“This means that members will get the full loan amount,” the GSIS chief added.

The pension fund’s P4.2-billion educational loan program is part of a P11.2 billion Educational Assistance Fund (EAF)—jointly made available with the Social Security System (SSS)—which Malacañang announced on Labor Day.

Of the amount that was released, P5 billion will come from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) and which the Bureau of the Treasury certified as part of the excess dividend collections from government-owned or -controlled corporations.

Budget Secretary Florencio B. Abad on Sunday said President Aquino has approved the EAF program that will be available to 1.4 million GSIS members and 200,000 SSS members.

Abad said these members may avail themselves of loans for four-year degree programs and technical or vocational courses.

“The Aquino administration understands that higher education is vital in strengthening the country’s work force,” he said. “The EAF program will also allow member-beneficiaries to develop talents essential to the workplace, as well as gain professional leverage in an increasingly competitive job market.”

The budget chief said the DBM—with cooperation from the Department of Finance, GSIS and SSS—will release the implementing guidelines for the use and purpose of the EAF.

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