FUND OVERVIEW AND GOVERNANCE
This section deals with the overview and governance of the fund.
Fund Overview and Governance Menu
The Political Office-Bearers Pension Fund was established with effect from 27 April 1994, although the formal structures of the Fund were only set up in 1998. The Fund provides retirement and other benefits for all members of Parliament and the Provincial Legislatures – this includes members of Cabinet (except the President) and members of the Provincial Executives.
In this section we explain:
- The definitions of Member, Employer and Principal Employer in the Fund Rules
- The key features of the Fund
- The mission and values of the Fund
1. All political office-bearers, as this term is defined in the Fund Rules, are required to be members of the Fund for the entire period that they hold political office (starting on or after 27 April 1994). Membership includes:
- The Deputy President;
- Ministers and Deputy Ministers;
- Members of the National Assembly and permanent delegates to the National Council of Provinces;
- Premiers and members of the Executive Councils of the Provinces;
- Members of the Provincial Legislatures;
- A diplomatic representative of South Africa who, at the time of her or his appointment as such, was not a civil servant and did not immediately become a contributory member of the GEPF – generally this refers to existing Fund members who are appointed to diplomatic positions but are over the age limit for eligibility to join the GEPF.
2. A member’s Employer, as this term is defined in the Fund Rules, means:
- The National Assembly;
- The National Council of Provinces;
- The nine Provincial Legislatures;
- Any Department of State where a Fund member is in Service.
3. The Principal Employer, as this term is defined in the Fund Rules, means:
- The Minister of Finance.
The Political Office-Bearers Pension Fund is largely a Defined Contribution arrangement, but has a Defined Benefit component as well. The meaning of these terms is explained briefly below. the section of this site, titled Benefits, explains this in more detail. The key feature of a Defined Contribution arrangement is that the benefit you receive on retirement depends on:
- The contributions (made by you and your employer) that are set aside monthly as your retirement savings;
- The investment returns (positive or negative) that the Fund earns on this money.
The key feature of a Defined Benefit arrangement is that the benefits that a member receives from the Fund are calculated based on factors such as your pensionable salary and years of service. The investment returns earned on the Fund’s investments do not affect these benefits.
Unusually, the Political Office-Bearers Pension Fund has a hybrid structure, where the benefits provided to members are largely Defined Contribution (where the investment returns earned by the Fund play a key role) but also partly Defined Benefit (where benefits are partly based on a formula). The details are explained in the section of this site, titled Benefits.
In addition to providing retirement benefits, the Fund also provides benefits on the resignation or death of a member. The difference between “retirement” and ”resignation”, as these terms are used in the Fund Rules with reference to political office-bearers, is explained in Benefits.
To provide retirement and other benefits for Fund members as well as for their beneficiaries in the event of their death, in compliance with the Fund Rules and the Pension Funds Act.