Vision Financial Services has shut down its operations in Kabale district unexpectedly leaving 103 depositors stranded. The microfinance firm started operating along Nyerere Avenue in Central Division in Kabale Municipality three months ago targeting customers from Kigezi region.
The company ran several adverts on local radio stations convincing people to obtain unsecured loans. The applicants were expected to open an account with Shillings 40,000, present a copy of their National identity card, an introductory letter from their Village chairperson and save Shillings 100,000 on their accounts to qualify for a loan of Shillings 1 million.
However, despite receiving deposits from several depositors, none of them obtained a loan from the micro finance. On Friday last week, some depositors stormed Vision Financial Services demanding an explanation as to why they have waited for their loans to be processed in vain. They were reportedly told to wait until October 13th 2018 when the loans will be ready but nothing happened.
This morning, the depositors were shocked to find the offices closed and the mobile phone numbers of all the workers switched off. Allen Busingye, a resident of Baare Sub County in Rubanda district, says she saved One Million Shillings with the hope of obtaining a loan of Shillings 10 million in a week's time.
Busingye says that after a week elapsed she followed up the loan but was told to wait. According to Busingye, she was shocked when she went back to check this morning and found the branch closed.
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Conrad Kimonge Tumuheirwe, a resident of Lower Bugongi in Northern Division in Kabale Municipality, says he saved over Shillings 400,000 with the microfinance and was shocked to find it closed. Kimonge says that he was convinced by one of the workers he only identified as Epaphras, a resident of Bugongi in Kabale municipality to join.
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Demitori Niwahanga says her group farmer's known as Bubaare Bakyaara Tukore in Bubaare Sub County in Rubanda district saved Shillings 1.050,000 with the hope of accessing a loan of Shillings 12 million.
She says they were attracted to join Vision Financial Services by an advert, which was running on Hills FM and Freedom radio in Kabale town.
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Boaz Tushabe from Rubaya Sub County in Kabale district says he saved Shillings 640,000 hoping to obtain a loan of Shillings 6 million but he was surprised when he found the offices closed.
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Elly Maate, the Kigezi Region Police Spokesperson, says police rescued Brian Akatukunda, a loan officer of the microfinance from being lynched by angry residents. Akatukunda is currently being held at Kabale Police Station under preventive arrest.