Editorial: There should be a mandatory effort in retirement planning

The Daily Graphic in last Friday’s issue quoted the Ghana Education Service Director-General, Prof Kwasi Opoku-Amankwa as saying, “You don’t have to wait till the last minute before you start planning for your pension. If you do that, you will find yourself wanting.” He made this assertion whilst advising staff of the service to plan adequately for their retirement.

The Chronicle is in support of Prof. Opoku-Amankwa’s advice because the Ghanaian workforce have adopted the habit of waiting till they are left with some few years before they started to plan for their pension. “Sometimes, we also look at our age and think we have more years to retire and so there is more time.

However, by the time we realize, the time is up for us to leave,” Prof. Opoku-Amankwa reiterated at a business activation fair for staff of the GES. He indeed hit the nail on the head by linking this problem to the fact that the youth think they have all the time in the world till they reach 60 years, before they begin to plan for their retirement. There have been instances where millionaire celebrities live the high-life and after retiring they have no place to lay their heads.

People spend their whole lives working and spending the money they earn and when retirement catches up with them, they realise there is nothing to fall on to, especially at a time they no longer earn as much or any money from work.

Workers should be made aware of retirement planning to determine their retirement income goals and the actions and decisions necessary to achieve those goals. Retirement planning should include identifying sources of income, sizing up expenses, implementing a savings program, and managing assets and risk. Retirement planning refers to financial strategies of saving, investments, and ultimately distributing money meant to sustain oneself during retirement.

The Chronicle is, therefore, lauding the Director-General of the GES for his assurance that the service would give the staff all the support they need and looking at all the options available for their staff to explore for better retirement. We hope this will serve as a lesson for other work places to emulate by educating their staff to start their retirement planning now instead of waiting till the last minute.

Our advice to all the youth out there is that the moment they get an employable job, they should immediately start planning for retirement and pension so that they can sustain themselves by the time they reach retirement age. Let us give priority to our retirement plans so that we don’t end up living miserable lives after pension.

Remember that retirement planning starts long before you retire—the sooner, the better it will be for you.


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