Warning: Trying to access array offset on value of type bool in /usr/www/users/urnnet/a/story.php on line 43
Minister Kasolo Orders Banks To Refund Cash For PDM Account Opening :: Uganda Radionetwork
Breaking

Minister Kasolo Orders Banks To Refund Cash For PDM Account Opening

Kasolo’s directive follows an outcry from PDM beneficiaries over alleged excessive charges from banking institutions while processing PDM cash. The banks have reportedly been asking PDM beneficiaries to pay money for account opening, affidavits for changing signatures, withdrawal of PDM cash at the counter while retaining more than five thousand shillings as minimum balances in each account.
Minister Kasolo (on black jumper) with some representatives of banks (on right) in Serere.

Audio 2

The Minister of State for Microfinance, Hajji. Haruna Kasolo Kyeyune has given banks in Teso Sub Region one week’s ultimatum to refund funds they allegedly extorted from Parish Development Model (PDM) beneficiaries when opening bank accounts.

Kasolo’s directive follows an outcry from PDM beneficiaries over alleged excessive charges from banking institutions while processing PDM cash. 

The banks have reportedly been asking PDM beneficiaries to pay money for account opening, affidavits for changing signatures, withdrawal of PDM cash at the counter while retaining more than five thousand shillings as minimum balances in each account.

In Serere, PDM beneficiaries told the Minister that some banks like Finance Trust Bank charges 10,000 Shillings for account opening, 3,000 shillings for passport photos, 20,000 shillings for affidavits and between 15,00 to 20,000 Shillings for withdrawal of PDM cash at the counter.

The Minister said that the charges are illegal since the government signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the banks handling the PDM program. According to Kasolo, the banks agreed to open accounts and withdraw cash for PDM beneficiaries at no cost. He also noted that the government MoU with the banks emphasized minimum charges on the PDM funds to enable beneficiaries access all the money meant for them.

Kasolo says that in Kumi district alone, people lost 946 million shillings into banks through various charges levied on beneficiaries. He tasked the RDCs to compile the list of PDM beneficiaries who have reportedly been extorted by the banks in Teso sub region.

//Cue in “Whoever paid for…

Cue out…have an account.”//

Juliet Ijangolet, an official working with Finance Trust Bank in Soroti earlier told the State Minister for Fisheries, Hellen Adoa Abeku during her Barraza in Labor Sub County that the charges levied on PDM beneficiaries were discussed and explained at the commencement of the PDM engagement in Serere. 

Citing the 20,000 Shillings for affidavits, Ijangolet said that the money is paid to the lawyers who help in case of changes in the signatures from the thumb prints appearing in their National Identity Cards. She explained that some PDM beneficiaries appended signatures different from those appearing in the IDs.

Ateso bite

//Cue in “Isio kwape finance…

Cue out…inamakini ijo.”//

According to Ijangolet, the monies collected for affidavits of 12 beneficiaries was refunded through the Labor LC3 Chairperson, Harunah Onai when complaints emerged from some leaders. But Onai, when contacted, said that he returned the money to the bank when the owners refused to pick it from his office.

“Not all people paid the 20,000 Shillings. Those who paid understood the conditions under which they were paying the money. But some people, not necessarily those who paid the money complained, forcing the bank to refund the money. When the money was brought to my office, only one person claimed his share while others told me to take back the money to the bank to enable them access PDM cash. They have since had their accounts reactivated, waiting for money,” explained Onai on phone.