By Gilbert Kobi
Kisii County Commissioner for Co-operative Development, Pamela Kemunto has urged parents to support their children to embrace the culture of borrowing loans, making investments and saving in Savings and Credit cooperative (Sacco) societies to boost their incomes and strengthen the societies.
The Commissioner challenged the parents to secure loans from the Sacco societies and help their children invest in viable projects to generate profits, repay the loans and qualify for more loans.
Pamela implored them to engage their children in viable projects during the holidays so that they do not engage in drug abuse and activities that could spread Covid-19.
“The children can venture into poultry or fish farming, save at the Sacco and secure loans at friendly and affordable interest rates” said the Commissioner.
Her sentiments came after the realization that members of the Sacco were not taking loans from the Sacco as lending decreased in the year 2020 as compared to that of 2019.
While speaking at Kisii Cultural Centre during the Sacco’s Annual Delegates General Meeting (AGM), the Chairman Hezekiah Nyasamba said that the pandemic had affected the Sacco’s business, stressing it has embraced virtual meetings to curb the spread of the pandemic.
“I urge Sacco members to take advantage of the reduced interest rates to secure loans from the society to increase its loan portfolio and the Sacco’s investments” Nyasamba said.
At the same time he urged delegates with Non-performing Loans (NPLs) to service them to qualify for re-election as required by the Sacco Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA).
Supervisory Committee Chairman, Joseph Nyakundi said the Sacco’s income decreased from Sh433, 791, 257 in 2019 to a staggering Sh379,939, 661 in 2020. He, however, attributed it to the challenges of Covid-19 and the government’s regulations to control the spread of the disease.
“The Sacco’s expenditure decreased to Sh335, 628, 673 in 2020 compared to Sh386, 674, 483 in the previous year. The Committee commends the Finance Department for controlling the expenditures” Nyakundi told delegates during the AGM.
He then appealed to the Board to start Agency Banking and open Pay Points at Etago, Magena, Borabu, Kegogi, Gesima and Sondu to bring services closer to Sacco members.
The officials further urged the Sacco to put measures in place to enable recovery of Non-Performing Loans (NPLs), assess and appraise members seeking to secure loans to reduce the loss of lending opportunities.
“Delegates need to take prudent judgment to transfer Sacco surplus to reserves when necessary to improve the Institution’s capital to total asset ratio” Nyakundi added.
He also noted that the active membership increased to 97, 948 in the year 2020 from 96, 026 in the year 2019 representing a 2% increase while dormant membership increased to 61,135 from 56,397 representing an increase of 45,738 as the dormant accounts advised the marketing department to find ways to activate dormant accounts and recruit new members to meet 2021 target.
The Sacco also increased its shares by Sh17, 088, 410 from Sh482, 460, 273 in the year 2019 to Sh499, 748, 683 in the year 2020 while the savings increased to Sh797, 525, 915 in the year 2020 from Sh77, 087, 189 in the year 2019 representing an increase of Sh20, 438,726.