GSIS to offer emergency loans for members in quake-hit Abra

STATE pension fund Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) announced it will open an emergency loan program on August 5 to nearly 7,000 members and pensioners in Abra, the epicenter of the 7.3 magnitude earthquake that hit the country last July 27.

“We are encouraging our members and pensioners who have been affected by the earthquake to avail of the GSIS emergency loan,” GSIS President and General Manager Jose Arnulfo A. Veloso was quoted in a statement as saying. “Nandito po ang GSIS para tumulong.” [The GSIS is here to help.]

According to the GSIS’s statement, it has already announced as early as July 28, the day after the earthquake, that it is prepared to open the emergency loan facility to extend financial assistance to its members and pensioners in Northern Luzon. However, under the guidelines, GSIS has to wait for the declaration of the affected localities as calamity areas before it could open the loan program.

“The other provinces in North Luzon have yet to be declared as calamity areas but GSIS is ready to open the emergency loan program once the declaration has been done,” Veloso said.

Affected active GSIS members working or residing as well as old-age and disability pensioners residing in the area may apply for the loan until September 4, the statement read.

Members and pensioners with existing emergency loan and would like to apply for the loan anew may borrow up to P40,000. The remaining balance will be deducted from their loan proceeds. While those without emergency loan, may apply for a P20,000 loan. Pensioners may similarly borrow P20,000.

The proceeds will be directly credited to the borrower’s UMID card or temporary eCard Plus account.

The GSIS said six portable wireless automated processing system kiosks were deployed to far-flung areas in the province to enable prospective loan applicants to save time and money in applying for the loan.

“Sa mga pag-aari naman ng gobyerno sa Abra na nasira ng lindol, titiyakin po natin na magbabayad ang GSIS upang magawang muli ang mga nasirang pag-aari ng pamahalaan na naka-insure sa GSIS. Sa ngayon, na-inspeksyon na namin at na-assess ang damage ng pito sa 29 na gusali ng gobyerno na nasira ng lindol,” Veloso added. [As for the government properties in Abra that were damaged by the earthquake, we will make sure that the GSIS pays to rebuild the damaged government properties insured by the GSIS. So far, we have inspected and assessed the damage of seven of the 29 government buildings damaged by the earthquake.]