‘Regional Credit Unions Need Support Now More than Ever’

first_imgChief of Party of the World Council of Credit Union (WOCCU), Patrick Muriuki, has reaffirmed the organization’s commitment to support Liberians through a model credit union program in the country.Mr. Muriuki, who is also the project director of Microlead, a Credit Union Revitalization Program in Liberia, said though WOCCU is there to help the Liberia Credit Union National Association (LCUNA), stakeholders, including development partners, it also needs to maintain the revitalization process and represent the credit union movement in international forums.“To stakeholders, regional credit unions, too, need your support now more than ever to continue to offer financial services to farmer cooperatives, savings clubs and village savings and loan associations in communities that have no access to formal banking services,” he said at the close of an annual assembly held in Ganta, Nimba County, on May 25.He told the assembly that all credit unions in the country must support the Board and management of LCUNA through due payments and participate in training activities offered by LCUNA so that their apex body can continue to advocate for them.“As you are aware, WOCCU began operations in Liberia in May 2013 and was mandated to renovate and equip the LCUNA building, construct and equip 4 regional credit unions, connect 40,000 new members to financial services and mobilize US$3.5 million in savings and loans,” Mr. Muriuki recalled.The WOCCU boss also said LCUNA, Regional Credit Unions (RCU) and other associations have received training on credit administration best practices, governance, and strategic planning in Liberia, Ghana, Rwanda and Sweden.Besides these constructive networks for LCUNA and RCU, the Microlead Program is constantly working on product development and diversification for loans (5 loan products) and deposits (6 deposit products). Insurance and salary payment services have commenced being offered at Region one (Bomi) and Region two (Grand Bassa) RCUs, and will be extended across the remaining RCUs as demand increases, he indicated. The RCUs are also mobile money agents and have been providing mobile money services to their communities since May 2014 (with an average of 2,577 transactions to date per RCU).The Microlead Program, according to him, has come to an end. “We are spending the next couple of weeks to link the regional credit unions and their members to other development partners in the country that have newer innovative programs in their regions,” he said. “I would like to encourage all credit union leaders that have more than 300 members to apply for a license from CBL. “When your credit union is licensed by the Central Bank, many institutions and development partners will begin to have confidence in your credit union,” he said.Mr. Muriuki thanked the Liberian government for creating an enabling environment for the operation of community-owned financial institutions that contribute to the development of the country’s economy.Meanwhile, WOCCU, with MasterCard Foundation funding through UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), has partnered with the LCUNA to rebuild the credit union sector of Liberia. WOCCU also promotes sustainable development of credit unions and other financial cooperatives around the world to empower people through access to high quality and affordable financial services.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Lefty Seibel eyes spot on bullpen

first_imgTEMPE, Ariz. – Without a serviceable left-handed reliever since the days of Scott Schoeneweis, Phil Seibel is trying to give the Angels a rare surplus in that department. Left-hander Darren Oliver appears set for one bullpen job while the left-handed Seibel battles it out with a group of relievers for the 11th spot on the pitching staff. Seibel was obtained in December from the Boston Red Sox in exchange for Brendan Donnelly, who became expendable when the Angels signed Justin Speier as a free agent. The 28-year old Seibel has a fastball that typically clocks in at the 88-mph range, which he compliments with a slider, changeup and curveball. Weaver back Scioscia is targeting this weekend or possibly early next week for Jered Weaver’s first throwing session from a mound. Weaver, who is dealing with a bout of biceps tendinitis, continues to throw from flat ground. His biggest issue would seem to be compressing a six-week spring training regimen into about four weeks, all on a sore shoulder. “If he can get out there four or five times in games he should get stretched out enough to be where he needs to be,” Scioscia said. The former Cypress High School honor student is smart enough, though, to calculate the numbers game he is up against. There are no less than six legitimate candidates for the spot in Seibel, Chris Bootcheck, Matt Hensley, Greg Jones, Dustin Moseley, Chris Resop, “There are 60 guys in the clubhouse that on April 2 want to leave with the team and that can’t happen,” Seibel said. “My goal is to pitch well and if it works out, great. Hopefully it will at least leave an impression that if it doesn’t work then if something happens, I’m one of the guys (they call on later).” center_img Taking the field Players will take the field around 10 a.m. for the first full-squad workout of the spring. All healthy players are expected to be in attendance, with Vladimir Guerrero and Erick Aybar the last to take their physicals Monday. … Francisco Rodriguez (sore right hamstring) had a flat-ground throwing session and went through PFP (pitchers’ fielding practice) drills. He is a few days away from his first bullpen session of the spring. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Hemp hype

first_imgHEMP may be a first cousin to marijuana, but that’s no reason to justify the continued ban on the useful plant. Indeed, the association with the illegal weed has unfairly tainted hemp from being grown and harvested. That’s why the bill by Sen. Tom McClintock, R-Thousand Oaks, to legalize the farming of this durable and sustainable crop ought to be supported by his colleagues. Long a cause for hippie types, hemp has gained popularity as a lucrative crop for fiber. There was never a very strong reason to ban hemp, other than that the plant looked a lot like marijuana. At a time when we need renewable resources, there’s even less reason. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

No pressure for KPL title, says Kimanzi

first_img0Shares0000Mathare United head coach Francis Kimanzi (right) with Gor Mahia’s Dylan Kerr (left). Photo/TIMOTHY OLOBULUNAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 12- Despite his side enjoying a blistering start to the new season, Mathare United head coach Francis Kimanzi says he is under no pressure to challenge for the 2018 Kenyan Premier League (KPL) title, exactly 10 years since he guided them to their first in 2008.Mathare narrowly avoided relegation last year and ended up finishing 13th but have posted contrasting results this year as they currently sit on the apex of the standings with 23 points off 10 games. “In the beginning, it wasn’t our target. We had a smaller target because we had to be realistic. To tell the players that we want to win the league after fighting relegation last season is a big step,”  the tactician offered.“Sometimes you don’t want to create tension in the group and you give attainable targets. But, I don’t see anything wrong to learn and still win something in the process.”He added; “We want to be another force in the league and do better than the previous two seasons. If you put yourself as a force then you are targeting anything achievable. We are not ruling out the league title because we have a team which we believe can face any challenge, take a game after game with passion and win.”Mathare United head coach Francis Kimanzi during training. Photo/TIMOTHY OLOBULUKimanzi has tried twice unsuccessfully to win the KPL title with Sofapaka and Tusker FC but with Mathare, he hopes the project he started last season can bear fruit within the next five years.The tactician lost almost the entire team at the end of the 2016 season and instead of replacing them with like for like figures, Kimanzi went for young, untested blood and he almost paid for it with relegation but they disentangled themselves in the final five games.He has stuck with the same squad for the 2018 season, only making a few additions though the core of the team remained.“I took a brave risk and sometimes we spent a lot of sleepless nights trying to find out how we can make it better for young, very inexperienced players but very talented. With the confidence and support I had, the program we made for them worked,” Kimanzi notes.Mathare United during training. Photo/TIMOTHY OLOBULU“We decided to start a foundation, genuinely sound and we walked without fear. We knew it was going to be tough. There was some false confidfence among the players. You could see that they want to do it but still had a long way to go,” He added.The tactician says he has been impressed with their growth and notes he is genuinely surprised that they have started hitting the right notes in just their second year together.“We had a grace period of three years for them to mature completely but they have completely surprised us. Almost 60, 70 percent has improved and if they can do it in the second year then it’s a great success,” the coach noted.The Slum Boys have only lost once this season, a 4-3 defeat at the hands of AFC Leopards in a match they led 3-1 at some point.But since then, they have won the next four matches back to back and Kimanzi only hopes they can remain consistent again for the next 10 games.They will be facing Posta Rangers in their next match on Sunday, a game Kimanzi says will be both very tough and very easy for his side.“We are playing against a tough team defensively but also, they don’t score. We only now have to worry about how we will open them up and get goals,” the coach noted.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more