Bureaucratic tendencies and mistrust among beneficiaries have been
blamed for the slow progress of the Emyooga program in Masaka.
Several of the intended beneficiaries in the area have
continuously lost interest in the program with some withdrawing their
membership from Savings and Credit Cooperatives- SACCOs.
It has emerged from the assessment of the program by Members of
Parliament that some of the SACCOs never completed their registration and
application processes and as a result, they are yet to benefit from the
Rose Nampijja, the Secretary for Kimyanya Women Briquette Making
Association says the program involved tedious preconditions that knocked them
off. She explains that they were asked to team up with similar associations in
the division, after which they would form a constituency SACCO before they
would access funds.
According to Nampijja, this condition raised concerns of financial
honesty among her group members.
“We have been running our savings scheme, but this program
required that we widen it by admitting other members or joining other
associations of people however never worked with before,” she says.
The association according to her continues to run their
micro-savings and credit scheme among a membership of seven people who
preferred to maintain their mode of operation.
Ronald Ahimbisibwe, a member of Kimanya-Kabonera County Media SACCO;
which didn’t complete the registration cycle, indicates that they could not
afford the extensive application processes involved in the program, which he
argues lacked substantial funding.
He also blames the project implementers for keeping in their
officers other than carrying out field supervisions through which they would
guide the beneficiaries.
//Cue in: “ekisooka program
Cue out: ….sente tezijja.”//
Juliet Nakidde, a Secretary of Nyendo-Kitaka Salon Operators
Association says they were denied access to the funds even after it was
deposited to their bank account after they failed to obtain a certificate from
the Microfinance Support Centre.
“We stopped at seeing a deposit message from our bank account, but
all attempts to start using the money never yielded results and we could not
wait any longer,” she says.
According to records at the Masaka Zonal Microfinance Support
Centre, a total of 36 SACCOs were registered in Masaka city and funded to a
tune of 1.2 billion shillings.
Baker Nambaale, the Masaka Branch Manager for the Microfinance
Support Centre says their teams will continue engaging with the affected SACCOs
to enable them to complete the processes and access the funds.
Nambaale says that the beneficiaries are required to first undergo
financial literacy training and be given certificates before they could be
allowed access to funds already deposited on their bank accounts.
//Cue in: “abantu bonna tebaggwayo….
Cue out: ….SACCO e Kampala.”//