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The Deputy Chief Executive Officer (DCEO) of the Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC), Mrs. Abibata Shanni Mahama Zakariah has disclosed government’s intention to rebrand or transform MASLOC to truly serve its purpose of helping the productive poor in the country.
According to her, MASLOC, which was supposed to be the apex of all microfinance institutions in Ghana had in the last few years encountered challenges, due to the failure of its management to recover the huge sums of money that were given out as loans to several beneficiaries.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with The Chronicle in Tamale, Mrs. Mahama Zakariah said the new management of MASLOC, led by her Boss, Mr. Stephen Amoah (CEO), was putting in place the necessary strategies and structures to ensure provision of micro and small loans for start-ups and small businesses with fast, easy and accessible microcredit and small loans to grow and expand their businesses as well as to enhance job and wealth creation in Ghana.
She said that the new management of the facility would make it easier, friendlier and more accessible for interested beneficiaries to enjoy MASLOC, irrespective of their political, religious or tribal affiliations.
The seemingly politicization of the MASLOC has made it quite unattractive and difficult for many people to access the facility; and majority of the beneficiary groups mostly hide under the shadows of their association with ruling political parties to default payment with impunity.
But the Deputy CEO insisted that the Akufo-Addo’s government would ensure that the MASLOC worked for all Ghanaians and provided the needed support to interested beneficiaries. She was, however, unhappy about the low loan recovery system that used to exist in the previous administration.
“MASLOC was set up in 2006 by President John Agyekum Kufuor to help the productive poor in Ghana, but as it is now, I will say MASLOC is still in shape but we wish it was better.
“For now, we haven’t started operation because we are focusing on recovery. Recovery rate before we took over was very low.
“But we are doing everything possible to recover most of the loans if not all before we start full operations in somewhere first week of July 2017”, she explained.
The Deputy CEO of MASLOC, Mrs. Mahama Zakaria said that Ghanaians were yet to enjoy the full benefit of MASLOC with the return to power of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) which initiated the programme and the level of commitment and experience of the current CEO and his management team.
When questioned whether MASLOC was poorly managed by the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, given the failure of the past administration to recover most of the loans, she declined direct comment but said that she had wished it was better.
Mrs. Mahama Zakariah did not also disclose how much money was in arrears with the explanation that she did not seek prior permission to disclose the figure.
She expressed confidence that MASLOC would serve Ghanaians better under the ruling government as captured in the NPP’s 2016 manifesto.
MASLOC is a microfinance apex body responsible for implementing the Government of Ghana’s (GoG) microfinance programmes targeted at reducing poverty.
Its objective is to provide, manage and regulate on fiduciary basis, approved funds for microfinance and small scale credit schemes and programmers and also serve as the apex body of the microfinance sub sector.
MASLOC under its Vehicle Hire Purchase Scheme distributes saloon cars to productive unemployed professional drivers who want to own their taxis, provide tricycles, special project loans, and individual and group loans among others.
Source: Edmond Gyebi || The Chronocle, Tamale