Namibia: Sanlam Creates 30 Jobs

The opening of three new Sanlam offices at Outapi, Katima Mulilo and Katutura has created over 30 jobs for Namibians.

The group's chief executive officer Tertius Stears said at the opening of the Katutura branch last Friday that "Sanlam has recruited over 30 employees for the newly launched offices at Outapi, Katima Mulilo and now Katutura. These are people who could have otherwise been jobless, but are now able to contribute to the economy and to their families".

He explained that a company can have the best strategy and marketable product services, but it is still up to the workers to execute the strategies, and lead to business success.

Stears justified the move to branch out to Katutura as part of their strategy to put clients first, in addition to the company finally attending to the numerous requests by their clients to open a branch near them.

He said: "The opening of the Sanlam Katutura office makes sound business sense, and it would be 'unwise' if we fail to respond to the needs of our clients and the research we conducted."

Stears assured clients that the new office will provide all the services offered at the main offices, and no client will be referred elsewhere.

Anyone can now also get life cover without medical testing, and after turning 65 years, no premium will be paid, but the client will remain covered.

As head of a non-banking financial institution, he also commended the tabling of the financial institutions markets bill, which is intended to regulate them.

The bill has been in the pipeline, and the Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority and the government consulted them on it.

"It is not something new; the whole progress has happened. A lot of it tried to focus on improving the value of our services to clients through simple language and products that are understandable to consumers. We are fully aligned and supportive of it," Stears stated.

Deputy finance minister Natangwe Iithete said the branching out of Sanlam within the country is an indication of the institution's firm confidence in the domestic economy.

In a speech read on his behalf by Penda Ithindi, technical economic adviser to the finance minister, Iithete said the expansion of Sanlam is what the national development agenda for inclusive and sustainable growth calls for, in line with the objective of the financial sector strategy, which advocates accessible financial services.

"The new branch opening also resonates well with the financial sector strategy's objectives of broad-based financial inclusion and expanded access to financial products and services," he noted.

Iithete also applauded Sanlam for branching out during the period of sluggish private investment and reduced government spending that has been the pillar of demand and growth.

The private sector investment in the economy plummeted to around 22,8% in the past three years.

"This expansion of investment by Sanlam Namibia is a noticeable progress point for a private sector-led growth pathway, and is taking place at a time when the domestic economy is emerging from prolonged recessionary pressures," he continued.

City of Windhoek mayor Muesee Kazapua said, in a speech read on his behalf by Ananias Niizimba, City of Windhoek councillor that the opening of a Sanlam branch in Katutura is in line with his call for companies to start investing more on the western side of the city.

"I made a call during the mayoral business forum in May this year for businesses to start investing more in the less-developed areas of Windhoek, like Katutura, as a way for us to accelerate development in the city," he stated.

Kazapua said for many years, the Katutura community has been left out from development, and deprived of essential services.

"It is disheartening to see businesses opening up all over the city, but leaving out less affluent neighbourhoods such as Katutura. To Sanlam, I say job well done," added the mayor.

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