Business - Economic Updates - Featured - Local - Top Stories - August 12, 2021

Delayed GEM fund, disrupt business opportunities for teachers

By Shushai Chimusambe

Some civil servants especially teachers who applied for the low interest loans from the Government Employees Mutual Savings Fund (GEMS FUND), a facility set up by Government to enhance their welfare and conditions of service, have not received their loans despite their approval.

The teachers who applied urgently for the loan were optimistic that their loans will be worked out on time and they were happy with the initiative done by government and believed that the loan will transform their lives since they intend to start projects and others to finish their houses which they had already started.

Teachers who spoke to BusinessMail were not happy with the delay of GEMS FUND because they were hoping to get the funds at least two weeks after its approval because they had agent plans with the money.

A lady teacher from Mazowe district (name withheld) said she was excited when she applied for the loan.

“I thought that I would finance my chicken project and expand it to a bigger project.

“I was aiming to buy chicken feed and stock before the prizes go up, but now I’m disappointed since I was hoping that I could race with the USD rate before it changes. I applied the loan in June and now it’s August,’ she said.

‘I’m really disappointed on the delay of GEMS fund. We applied the loan on the 4th of June and were hoping that by end of June or in July we will receive our money since we were told that the loan has been approved but now its August we haven’t received the money.

“It was better if I had applied through my bank because within two weeks I could have received my loan and do whatever I want to do in time and right now when the GEMS come it would have already been hit by inflation,’ said Mr. Tenzi( name of school withheld).

Both the teachers said that when they inquired with the bank offering the loan they were told that Treasury does not have money for now but the fund will definitely come.

However, some of the civil servants managed to get their GEMS fund loans.

The GEMS fund is a voluntary scheme launched last year and seeks to encourage civil servants to accumulate savings through small monthly deductions from their salaries, provide financial assistance in the form of loans or similar instruments and enhance financial flexibility and security for members.

The government approved the establishment of the Civil Service Mutual Savings Fund and injected $100million as seed capital and the Fund is being augmented by a deduction of 2.5 percent from the total pay of interested civil servants.

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