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Regional News Sat, 24 Jun 2006

Channel MPs funds through rural banks-MP

Jomoro (W/R), June 24,-GNA-Mr. Lee Ocran, Member of Parliament for Jomoro had advocated for the channelling of the Member of Parliament's (MP) common fund and MPs share of the HIPC fund through rural banks. He said the present situation where the funds were paid into the National Investment Bank (NIB) accounts in Takoradi made it difficult for some beneficiaries to access the funds.

Mr. Ocran said this at the 11th annual general meeting of the Jomoro rural bank at Jomoro on Saturday.

He said the funds, if channelled through rural and community banks, apart from reaching a greater number of people could also boost the working capital of the banks.

Mr. Ocran said the expansion of rural banks into big cities was depriving several rural communities and inhabitants from benefiting from the banks financial assistance.

He therefore, appealed to rural and community (RCB) banks to intensify their 'susu' collection schemes and target the fishing communities, agro processing groups and other small-scale entrepreneurs in their operating areas.

Mr. Ocran said the RCB would not be serving the interests of the people if it ignores the small-scale businesses within their areas of operation.

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Awulae Annor Adjaye III, President of the Western Nzema Traditional Council, who chaired the function said the RCB must find ways to raise its stated capital to enable it to remain in operation. He said shareholders must be encouraged to buy more, while new and prospective ones must be encouraged to invest their finances in the bank.

Awulae Adjaye cautioned that the truth must be told at all times irrespective of the consequences. He said no bank would survive if it decides to hide some information from its clients and shareholders.

Awulae Adjaye appealed to the board of directors to stand firm and protect the interests of the bank.

He reminded loan defaulters to re-pay loans since such assistance were not "political money that must be enjoyed free". Awulae Adjaye told the management to devise strategies to redeem all outstanding loans and those who failed to pay must be prosecuted. Mr. Martin Ackah, District Chief Executive for Jomoro reminded workers of the bank to be courteous to customers and give them special attention.

He said the public looked up to the bank, not only as a financial institution, but a development partner in the community. Mr. Ackah therefore, cautioned management and board to eschew all forms of corruption to ensure the survival of the bank. He said funds released by government should be accepted and used for only those purposes. Mr. Ackah noted that many people would be willing to save with the banks if they adopt people centred strategies to encourage them to use the banks. "Try and make interest rates friendly to allow more people to have access to loans," he added. 24 June 06

Source: GNA
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