Rural banks urged to be innovative

Mr. Eric Osei-Bonsu, Managing Director of ARB Apex Bank, at the weekend called on Rural Community Banks (RCBs) to be innovative in their operations by coming out with products that are satisfactory to clients.

Mr Osei-Bonsu said this in a speech read for him by Mr. Reuben Adamptey, Bolgatanga branch manager of ARB Apex Bank, in Sandema on the occasion of the Eleventh Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Builsa Community Bank (BUCOBANK).

He said the introduction of innovations by RCBs would help bring banking to the doorsteps of customers and increase customer base.

He said though the bank had its challenges, the 2009 financial performance of the bank indicated significant improvement in deposits, total assets, capital and loans, and congratulated management, staff, and stakeholders for the achievement.

He commended the Bank for the immense improvements in its operations and for being among 79 RCBs singled out for satisfactory performance by the Monitoring Unit of the ARB Apex bank last year.

He called on the bank to ensure that appraisal of loans were properly done and well monitored to avoid defaults. He also encouraged loan beneficiaries to make prompt repayments to enable them to continue to enjoy the facility.

He said BUCOBANK had been computerized under the RCBs computerization system and asked management and staff to take the opportunity to deliver quality services to customers.

He congratulated the Board of Directors (BOD), management and staff and shareholders for their dedication and smooth running of business, urging them not to relent in their efforts to bring development to the catchment area of the bank.

Mr Edward Atagabe, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bank, said in the face of all challenges faced during the economic recession and financial instability, the bank through the support of its Board and hard working management and staff, recorded 4.2 per cent in surpluses as operational income.

He said GH¢627,562.00 as against GH¢606,087.00 was recorded as operational income in 2008, whilst operational expenditure amounted to GH¢505,804.00 in 2009, as against GH¢455,049.00 in 2008.

Mr. Mark Woyongo, Upper East Regional Minister, said using micro finance as an instrument for wealth creation and poverty reduction required an integrated effort by all stakeholders.

Mr. Woyongo said government recognized the tackling of poverty as one of the effective ways in achieving all the other seven Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

He said the remarkable growth in the number of micro finance institutions in the country was because government in partnership with supporting institutions provided the enabling environment over the years.

He commended the bank for supporting important sectors in the area of scholarship to needy students as part of their social responsibilities. He appealed to parents to encourage their children to study hard so that they could benefit from the financial support given to students by the bank.

He called on sons and daughters of the area to develop interest in supporting the bank to grow to enable it to continue to provide good services to the people of the area.

He commended Mr. Daniel Syme, a former District Chief Executive (DCE) of the area, and the late Naab Ayieta Azantillow, paramount chief of the Builsa Traditional Area, for the pioneering roles they played in the foundation stages of the bank.

Awards were given to best deposit client, long serving staff and best and prompt loan repayment groups.

Source: GNA

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