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Regional News Fri, 12 Sep 2008

Pro-Credit Detains Woman & Two Kids As Collateral

The Tema Community one branch of Pro-Credit last night took into its custody a woman by name, Mrs. Veronica Eklu and her two kids aged 2 and 7 years. They were picked from their abode at Lashibi at 3pm and as at quarter to 9pm were still within Pro-credits’ premises.

When asked whether this was the best option available to Pro-credit regardless of the circumstance, an official named Bertha, stated that there was nothing else they could do apart from taking the woman hostage until the money is claimed. It was then revealed that, though Mrs. Veronica Eklu’s husband was paying for the loan, he used documents covering properties that were not his. The cash involved here including interest add up to approximately GH ¢1,900 (nineteen million cedis in old currency).

From the confidence demonstrated by Bertha, it looked so obvious that this might not have been the first of such a case, which is detaining innocent relatives as collateral on the part of Pro-credit. “All I want is the money and I don’t care she is a woman with kids, I am also a woman and I’m doing my job”, insisted Bertha.

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If innocent relatives could at any point in time be taken as collateral by a financial institution like Pro-Credit, then the public must really be informed and possibly look at that as a policy of Pro-Credit. As a human rights activist, this is a very serious case of abuse bearing in mind the fact that these innocent relatives might even not be aware of such transactions.

ProCredit Savings and Loans Company is a member of the ProCredit group which consists of a current total of 21 financial microfinance institutions and banks with over 425 branches and more than 11,000 staff members in developing countries and transition economies in Eastern Europe, Latin America and Africa.

Eyewitness: Frank Agyemang (0244609620)

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