It was all joy and excitement amongst residents of Mwanza last Friday (October 17, 2014) as Opportunity Bank of Malawi (OBM) commonly known referred to as Banki Yanga officially opened its new sales office in the border district.
This was the second time within a space of a week for Opportunity Bank to expand its services to the semi-urban population following the opening of Balaka sales office a couple of weeks ago.
Having got wind of the friendly and unique financial services OBM has been offering to its customers and clients, Mwanza residents did not hide their excitement at the coming of Banki Yanga into the area.
“The coming of Opportunity Bank in Mwanza was long overdue. There is a lot of economic activity in this border town but for long people have been denied of friendly banking and financial services such as the ones offered at Opportunity Bank. No wonder the people are excited- they know they will now be able to access business loans very easily and will not be losing their money to the bank in the name of service fees,” said Inkosi Kanduku Maseko.
Acting Director of Planning and Development at Mwanza District Council Edgar Chihana, who was guest of honour at the launch of the new office said the coming of OBM would help accelerate development in the area.
“Mwanza is the fastest growing area in terms of population growth with a growth rate of 4.1 percent but we only had one bank. At council we have programmes aimed at empowering the people and instilling a culture of saving amongst the locals. We believe if the people save, there will be more development,” said Chihana.
Chihana urged OBM to reach out to community groups in the area and equip the groups’ membership with saving skills.
OBM marketing manager Victoria Munthali said the new sales office would not handle cash transactions but would assist people open accounts, access loans and get other information on services offered the bank.
“We are following what is called a hub and spoke model, whereby all deposits and withdraws are handled by agents surrounding the office. At the sales office we have a very active team of staff that will be helping people open accounts and loan officers who are well equipped to provide our customers with solutions to their businesses through the various loans we provide,” said Munthali.
The OBM marketing manager hailed Post Code Lottery of UK for funding the establishment of three sales offices. She said the remaining office will be opened in Phalombe in due course.