Mr. Ajani Samuel joined the services of the Lagos State Government as an information officer fresh out of the university in January 1983.
Having served meritoriously for 40 years working in different departments, ministries, and parastatals, he’s set to retire.
As a young civil servant, Mr. Ajani has witnessed many worrying stories of individuals who retired and had to wait on their pension or do other menial jobs to survive; he shared his plans with his subordinates on how to plan for life after retirement in his last official meeting as a director.
Having learned from the harrowing stories of many, Mr. Ajani was prepared for his retirement with a retirement savings account he opened over two decades.
This retirement account is different from his regular salary account.
A retirement savings account is an account where 20% of Mr. Ajala’s monthly salary goes. As he moves up the cadre in the civil service, so do his retirement funds.
You don’t have to work with the government like Mr. Ajala; even while working in a private organization, you can open one with any of the financial institutions and ensure that your employer remits the agreed percentage monthly.
Mr. Ajala learned from the popular saying, “Don’t use your ten fingers to eat.” Aside from his retirement account, he ensured that he also invested a portion of his salary into different businesses.
Mr. Ajala, after doing his research, invested in mutual funds with one of the commercial banks. Investing in mutual funds means Mr. Ajala invests some percentage with the bank that does business with his money and that of other investors, and he gets a return based on the amount or percentage he invested.
The nature of the economy makes it impossible not to borrow money from friends and even co-workers at some point. He was a member of the cooperative and collected a loan when he was about to complete the building of this house.
One thing he ensured he did was to pay back all the loans and stay debt-free. With this, he doesn’t need to use his pension and gratuity as a means of servicing his loans.
Beyond the financial aspect, Mr. Ajala understood that it’s important to maintain a healthy lifestyle ahead of retirement so as to live long enough to enjoy the benefits of what he’s worked for over the years.
One of the things he did some years before retirement was to cut off junk foods such as drinks and sausage he eats while stuck in traffic on his way home after work.
Another thing he did was to ensure he gets enough sleep of at least 7 hours every day, according to the advice he got when he visited the hospital for a checkup.
While he was making plans on what to do before retirement, he never failed to plan for what to do after he retired, which is one of the things many don’t.
Mr. Ajala plans to join a retiree club near his home, where retired people gather three times a week to do some form of exercise. With his savings, he also plans to do some business so as not to remain idle.
Be like Mr. Ajala; retirement should be enjoyed and not endured.