The Deputy Upper West Regional Minister, Mr Amidu Chinnia Issahaku has implored the management board of the Micro and Small Loan Centre (MASLOC) to reconsider the requirements for accessing loan facility from the centre.
He said though it was appropriate to set some requirements one needed to access loan from MASLOC to restrict and control the system, too many requirements would deter eligible individuals and groups from accessing the loan.
Mr. Chinnia made the observation when the Management Board of the MASLOC paid a courtesy call on him at his office in Wa on Thursday as part of efforts to assess the performance of the institution at the local level.
As part of the requirements to access loan from MASLOC, one needed to provide a guarantor who would stand for him before he could be given a loan.
“Sometimes looking at our local people and our local situation, when you have so many restrictions or requirements for people to qualify, you end up not making it possible for people who would have succeeded not getting the chance.
Even though we appreciate the fact that there must be requirements so that you can restrict and control the system, but we have to also have a second look at things so that we can make it possible for a lot of potential business people to have access to these loan facilities so that they can improve their lots”, Mr Chinnia said.
The Deputy Minister noted that MASLOC had brought hope and relief to many people and groups in the region but that there is more room for improvement, especially regarding individual support.
He also proposed capacity building for the business community to orientate them on the prospects of business ideas and plans “because it is not everybody who applies for money who has a good business plan”.
You will have a business idea and think it is feasible and the only thing you need is money, but you get the money and it turns out not to work. Giving them capacity building to let them understand what is practicable.
Mr Chinnia added that the education system had not been designed to equip the people with the requisite skills and knowledge to develop their own business but to depend on government.
He, thus, commended the minister of education for designing the new education curriculum for the basic level which focused on skill development which was key to developing the entrepreneurial skills of the students.
On his part, The Board Chairman of MASLOC, Mr Fep Agyei Baah, said it was impossible for the government to employ all Ghanaians hence the institution of laudable programmes and policies to develop the private sector so it could take its rightful position to develop the economy of this country.
He, therefore, entreated the youth to take advantage of the MASLOC and other programmes such as the One-District-One-Factory which was being supported by the Ghana Exim Bank, develop their own businesses.
Mr Baah also emphasised the need for the government to not “determine what business the people should do by importing tricycles” and distributing among them but the people should be given the opportunity to decide what they want to do.