In an effort to improve the agribusiness sector of Ghana’s economy, Mumuadu Rural Bank, one of Ghana’s strongest rural banks has supported poultry farmers within the Kwahu ridge with a GH¢ 348,000 loan facility to help improve and expand their venture.
The facility which was accessed by the bank from the Rural Enterprise Programme was disbursed to some 30 poultry farmers who are members of the Kwahu poultry farmers association, located within the Kwahu West Municipality according to individual needs.
Speaking to our news team on the loan facility, Mr. Stephen Bekoe Boadu, the head of micro finance at Mumuadu Rural Bank indicated that, records available to his outfit revealed that, access to financing was a major challenge to the poultry farmers, especially because of the risky nature of their venture, hence the intervention of the bank. He further stated that, the bank was motivated by the fact, most of their customers and client were located in agricultural areas and therefore deemed it necessary to support them with such a facility.
“As a rural bank, we took our motivation from the fact that most of our branches and clients are located in agricultural areas where access to financing is mostly a challenge. We therefore considered it prudent to put such an initiative in place in order to adequately serve and support our customers”. He said.
According to the head of micro finance, the fund is an IFAD and Rural Enterprise Programme, which requires that only financial institutions with good standings could access it on behalf of beneficiary individuals or groups.
Explaining the modus operandi of the loan, Mr. Boadu stated that, the bank decided to adopt the group lending approach in order to ensure that, the farmers themselves could monitor the management of the funds and regulate the repayment schedules, considering the risky nature of the poultry industry.
“Considering how risky the venture is, we adopted the group lending approach in order to allow the group conduct their appraisals and manage the funds themselves, including the necessary checks and repayment plan. It is important to state that, because the fund is an IFAD, REP facility, the bank has tried to disburse the funds to the farmers on time with an additional 6 months moratorium in order to allow the farmers ample time to invest the funds and also be able to pay back on time”. He added.
Mr. Bekoe Boadu, further noted that Mumuadu is ever ready to provide quality and flexible services to all customers, especially those in agribusinesses. He has also encouraged other rural banks to also enter into the venture and assist farmers to expand their businesses and not always focus on making profit.
On his part, Mr. Boansi Darkwah, the acting chairman of the Kwahu Poultry farmers association also indicated that, members of the association owe Mumuadu Rural Bank much appreciation for the exceptional role they played in securing the loan facility for them. According to him, even though there are many financial institutions in the area, Mumuadu Rural Bank has proven to be the real bank for the people.
“We cannot thank Mumuadu Rural Bank enough because of what they have done for us poultry farmers. You see, there are several financial institutions here but they have proven to be the real bank for the people. What amazes us most is the 6 months grace period that they gave us, including the rather low interest rate which gave us the space to invest the funds and be able to pay back. I also want to thank the government for making such funds available for poor farmers like us”. He said.
He further advised the youth to develop interest in the agricultural sector because government has put in place a lot of packages that enhances the industry today.
Our checks at the Business Advisory Centre at the Kwahu West Municipal Assembly confirmed that Mumuadu Rural Bank had all the requirements and the financial muscle to access the loan facility and has managed the funds accurately as required, thereby qualified to access other opportunities available.