Government releases Kr50 million to develop Western province

Alexanda Chikwanda

FINANCE minister Alexander Chkwanda says the government has released KR 50, 000, 000 for various developmental programs in North-Western province.
Speaking when he officiated NATSAVE bank, Chavuma branch on Friday, Chikwanda said some of the money would go towards the construction of an office block in Chavuma at KR 1, 000, 000, upgrading of Lamba and Mutanda schools at KR 2,000,000, upgrading of Jimbe road at KR 2,000,000, upgrading of Chitokoloki Road at KR2,000,000 among others.
He also said the government would mobilize resources to ensure there was state of the art infrastructure as it was committed to developing the province.
Chikwanda welcomed the opening of new NATSAVE branch in Chavuma saying it would help the community save money in a secure manner.
“The private sector like farmers union should not only concentrate along the line of rail but to reach the far areas as well. The banking sector will also encourage other investors to come on board and invest in such areas there by creating employment,” Chikwanda said.
He said the youths should take advantage of the development and open accounts as it was the only way they could not access the Youth Empowerment Fund without accounts.
He also urged every part of the society to start saving especially civil servants who were failing to do so due to distance challenges.
Chikwanda said civil servants were forced to withdraw all their salaries at once as they were no banking services in most areas adding that the banking sector was the major driver of the economy.
The minister also welcomed the introduction of the micro lending program where civil servants will access loans at a lower rate of 5% as compared to the macro organizations with very high lending rates.
He further explained the importance of the Mutanda-Chavuma road saying it would promote commerce and industry in north western province.
He said the road was also a communication link to all parts of the country and Angola making it easier for trading.
Chikwanda also launched a new product by NATSAVE called role out Micro finance programme which would help farmers and small businesses.
Meanwhile North-western province minister Nathaniel Mubukwanu urged people in the area to take full advantage of the new branch and stop hiding money in their pillows.
And Bank of Zambia governor Dr Michael Gondwe encouraged banks in the country embark on branch expansion to serve remote parts.
Dr Gondwe commended NATSAVE for the commitment to serving the rural community adding that it should offer different packages to help all sectors of the community.