This has been disclosed during the 21st Annual General Meeting for Polymed SACCO held in Blantyre. According to Cydex Makunje, CEO for Polymed SACCO, most companies despite effecting payroll deductions, do not remit the funds to SACCOs on time some even take 5 months before clearing the outstanding balances this among other challenges affect growth rate of many SACCOs due to loss of business.
Despite such challenges, Makunje says Polymed SACCO has posted profit in the 2016-17 financial year. The SACCO has managed to make over 68 million Kwacha as profit for the year much to the joy of the shareholders as the organization deferred dividends in the preceding year. He highlights some of the successes registered.
“SACCOs are facing a number of challenges on overall delayed or non-remittance of deductions is stifling growth. Secondly delinquency is another factor, some come and borrow money but servicing the loan becomes a problem. But on the other hand SACCOs are contributing to economic growth of the country. We have members who have purchased plots and built houses in low and high density areas of the country’s main cities. As a SACCO we have intensified our growth strategies and now we have opened a branch in Lilongwe just to get closer to the people,” said Makunje.
Guest of honour at the function Margaret Judith Longwe said it was pleasing to note that most members of SACCOs are now conversant with how the financial institutions are operating and are able to question where they spot grey areas in audited accounts.
“For me it is pleasing to note that there’s high literacy as a far as interpretation of the audited accounts is concerned. You noticed the members rising on several occasions to question where they were not clear. It is encouraging that now more people are becoming members of SACCOs which signals growth of saving culture,” said Longwe.
On his part representative of Malawi Union of Savings and Credit Cooperative (MUSCCO), Marko Nkhoma, said SACCOs have provided a good altenative to sources of capital. He said the mushrooming of village banks will not affect operations of SACCOs as there’s already a plan to link village banks with SACCOs.
“Village banks are getting established across the country but this does not have any much effect on SACCO operations. Actually we have already laid out a plan to integrate village banks to SACCOs. This will boost membership and assets of SACCOs across the country.”
As of 31st March 2010 records indicated that total assets for SACCOs in the country hovered over 19 million United States Dollars. There are over 48 registered SACCOs across the country.