Bank of Ghana urged to accelerate computerization of rural banks

The Bank of Ghana (BoG) and the ARB Apex Bank have been urged to, as a matter of urgency, accelerate the computerization of Rural and Community Banks (RCB’s) in the Country to facilitate their operations.

The Regional Coordinator of Trias Ghana, Mr. Rex Asanga, made the call when his outfit donated 78 computers, printers and other accessories valued at 50,017.71 Ghana Cedis, to 12 Rural/Community Banks (RCBs) operating in the three Northern Regions.

Trias Ghana is an NGO working to build the capacity of RCBs in the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions, and to support them in micro-financing.

Mr. Asanga stated that there was the need for the BOG and Apex Bank to fast track the computerization programme of the RCBs which had been budgeted for under the Millennium Challenge pact.

He noted that most RCBs upon hearing news about the computerization of banks decided to employ staff and prepared data waiting for the process to start, but which had not yet been done.

In a related development, the Board Chairman of the BESSFA Rural Bank in the Garu-Tempane District of the Upper East Region, Mr. Solomon Atiga, has expressed concern about the delay in the establishment of the computerization process of rural banks as promised by the BOG and Apex Bank, saying that it was undermining the performance of rural banks.

Speaking at the 18th Annual General Meeting of the Bank held in Garu recently, Mr Atiga stated that in this modern era of technological advancement, rural banks were still using manual methods to perform duties and said it did not augur well for the effective delivery of services to customers.

He indicated that the bank chalked some level of successes and said deposits increased from 1,854,589 in 2007 to 2, 665,482 in 2008.

He said the bank was to streamline its strategies in giving out credit, adding that it would embark on a campaign to sensitize loan beneficiaries so as to improve credit delivery and utilization.

“Under the programme, beneficiaries would form groups and would be taken through some educational modules before they are granted loans”, he explained.

Mr. Atiga indicated that the Management of the bank was constructing a premises in Bawku at the cost of 300,000 Ghana cedis to be used as an agency.

Mr. Sulley Agholisi, President of the North-Eastern Chapter of the Rural and Community Banks, appealed to shareholders of the bank to re-evaluate and increase their share holdings to increase the capital base of the Bank.

He noted with concern that the floating of shares had become a problem in all the 12 rural and community banks operating in the three Northern Regions, and called on the sons and daughters of the area to patronize shares floated by rural Banks.

Source: GNA

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