Gambia: NACCUG Reflects On Union's Contributions, Achievements On ICU Day

20 October 2020

In celebration of the International Credit Union Day, the National Association of Cooperative Credit Unions of The Gambia (NACCUG) on Thursday convened a press briefing to observe International Credit Union Day (ICUD).

The press confab held at the union's headquarters in Kanifing,was also to reflect on NACCUG's contributions, challenges and achievements in the country.

ICUD is a day set aside by the World Council of Credit Unions(WOCCU) to recognize and promote the importance of credit unions globally. The theme for this year's event is "inspiring hope for a global community".

Formed and legally registered in August 1992, NACCUG-The Gambia has the mandate to promote and support the development of credit unions across the country.

Foday Sanyang, general manager of NACCUG, informed that currently there are 86,055 credit unions with a membership of 291,432,972 in 118 countries worldwide.

He disclosed that NACCUG is the umbrella body in the country with 56 affiliated credit unions and a combined membership of more than 87,000.

Credit unions in The Gambia, he said, donatedsanitary items to all community-based credit unions.

"Also, Individual credit unions made donations to their various institutions; some even made direct contributions to the Ministry of Health."

While thanking development partners for their support,Sanyang likewise applauded credit unions for coming up with products and services to help members during these trying times.

Dawda Kujabi, chairman of the task force committee on ICUD, underscored the significance of the day, emphasizing that credit unions give hope to people who are considered under privileged.

The theme of this year's event, he added, focuses on three things: financial support, education and social responsibility.

Sanyang noted the role of credit unions apart from educating people on financial literacy, minor or major investment opportunities they also encourage members to be part of a movement that can provide ultimate source of finance apart from the banks.

Kujabi hailed credit union managers, board members and NACCUG for supporting their members in the midst of the pandemic.

"Our members were in dire need of finance because the market has turned into something else. Prices of basic commodities skyrocketed as a result of the pandemic."

He further said that The Gambia has two sets of credit unions namely the work-based credit union and community-based credit unions.

"However, for one to become a member certain eligible criteria have to be met".

He indicated that through the support of credit unions,some parents were able to send their children to school, while others built houses or established businesses.

Nuha Sanneh Central Finance Facility Manager highlighted some of the products and services the union offers to their members, which include a quick loan facility which is seasonal.

These loans, he added, are concessional loans that are given to members for financial support with a low interest rate."Once you belong to a credit union and you are qualified for a loan and there will be nothing that will restrict you from accessing finance." he noted.

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