It has been realized that most small businesses had been operating on loans secured from micro finance and money lending institutions within their localities.
They are supposed to be remitting payments back to the institutions who had given money whether the business is running or not.
Local Government has temporarily suspended operation of all microfinance and money
lending institutions in the district.
The district leadership acted following public outcry that borrowers are having difficulties servicing the loans after President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni's recent directives issued to control the spread of Coronavirus (COVID -19).
On March 18th President Museveni suspended all social gatherings including markets
for a period of 32 days, and on March 25th he subsequently suspended
all public transport for 14 days.
Much as the president in
his directives has stopped traders from hiking prices, local businessmen are still crying that the government should help and find a solution so that they can do business.
It has been realized that
most small businesses had been operating after securing loans from micro finance
and money lending institutions within their localities.
They are supposed to be
remitting money back to the institutions whether the
business is running or not.
Beatrice Akello Akori, the
Apac Resident District Commissioner says over 2000 locals borrowed money from
different money lending institutions and are now unable to service the
loans due to the effect of Coronavirus.
It is for this reason
that authorities in Apac district have warned to arrest and revoke the licenses
of the money lending operators that will be found chasing their customers to service the loans.
Akello Akori says now
that the markets are closed her office has directed the closure of all money
lending institutions awaiting the response from the government.
She said the perpetrators will have their licenses revoked and handed over to the Minister
of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives effective.
//Cue in: “There are
Cue out: … have stopped
She however observed that
many locals in the area have resorted to excessive drinking of alcohol what she
described as a wrong message and warned them to desist from it.
//Cue in: “People have
Cue out: … has no cure.”//
Beatrice Aceng, a vendor
at Apac Main Market says she borrowed a total of 400,000 Shillings from Brac to
start her vegetable business and was servicing her loan well until the ban was
Aceng thanked the district
authorities for the intervention calling upon the government to revise on the
same as well as the tenants who are now affected to save the citizen from
absolute poverty at different households.
//Cue in: “Ento Amani icawani…
Cue out: … otimo wani
Bazil Odongo, a livestock
dealer says he secured 25 million shillings from Acanpekun Credit and
Cooperative Society, a local SACCO in the district and was servicing the loan
well but he is now having difficulty in servicing it.
Apac District Local
Government has a total of 6 fully registered SACCOs, 12 Village Saving Lending
Associations (VSLA) and 3 Microfinance institutions operating in the district with
over 15,000 clients that are entirely depending on commercial farming.
The affected money
lending intuitions include Brac, Platinum Credit, Bayport, Village Saving
Lending Associations and 6 registered SACCOs in the district.