The Ghana Association of Savings and Loans Companies (GHASALC) has appealed for government to rope its members into disbursement of the GH¢600 million stimulus package meant for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
“We are experts in doing business with the SMEs in Ghana. It will therefore be in order for government to involve the savings and loans companies in disbursement of the stimulus package to support SMEs. We have the structures, and it will also boost the liquidity position of the industry,” the Executive Secretary for the Association, Tweneboah Kodua Boakye, told the B&FT in an interview.
“We are also streamlining our operations to ensure that they are fully digitised while taking advantage of the digital revolution. We urge and encourage all our clients to continue doing business with their preferred savings and loans company,” he said.
According to the association, already – following the occurrence of the COVID-19 outbreak resulting in slowdown of business activities as well as bringing some challenges to some businesses, homes and individuals – the various savings and loans companies have worked with their affected clients to bring some relief to them.
Some of its members have given repayment extensions to their loan clients, while some clients are also enjoying reductions in interest rate or loan reschedules or restructuring. A number of the S&Ls have also made donations in kind to their affected clients, as well as some of the vulnerable communities where they operate.
Mr. Kodua Boakye made this known when the association donated medical essentials worth GH¢50,000 to the Ga East Hospital to help in management and treatment of patients with COVID-19 at the facility.
The medical essentials donated include a number of Omron i11 Digital BP Apparatus (with cuff and adaptor), Omron Standing BP Apparatus (with 3 cuffs, rechargeable battery and basket), Infrared Thermometers, Pulse Oximeters, Soap/Sanitiser Dispensers, Bedsheets, N-95 face masks, Disposable Surgical Face masks and Disposable Gowns. The items also include Assorted Toiletries, Tissue, gallons of Liquid Soap and 60 boxes/packs of Bottled Water.
Mr. Kodua Boakye told this paper that “as part of the generosity of the companies as well as their appreciation of the magnitude of challenges this pandemic has brought on the nation as a whole, in addition to the support being given to their clients who have requested for same, the members, through the association are making this donation to support the national effort”.
In addition to this donation, the association will make more donations into the National COVID-19 Fund and also similar donations to another health facility involved in the treatment of affected persons in Kumasi.
The association however appealed for government to continue supporting the banking sector, especially savings and loans companies, to ensure the financial sector remains buoyant.
The Medical Superintendent for the Ga East Municipal Hospital COVID-19 Treatment Centre, Dr. Ebenezer Oduro Mensah, expressed profound gratitude for the gesture and said the medical essentials will go a long way to help their operations even post COVID-19.