The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country has adversely affected the financial performance of the Wa Co-operative Credit Union (WACCU) for the year 2020, Mr John Kofi Seidu, Board Chairman of the Union has said.
“We were compelled to hold beyond normal levels of liquidity to meet the rampant withdrawal demands by members causing the Union to lose the income that could have been gained on those withdrawals”, he said.
Speaking at the 2021 Annual General Meeting of the Union in Wa at the weekend, Mr Seidu added that some members had their monies locked-up in the collapsed financial institution during the sector clean-up by the Bank of Ghana.
He indicated that the pandemic had also affected the businesses of members of the Union, which had compelled the Union to cancel the interests on loans of the affected members.
He said the Union also had an investment of GHc1, 058, 000.00 with Gold Coast Fund Management as well as a mature investment of GHc601,000.00 with Investa Capital yet to be recovered.
According to him, the Union made an income of GHc 3, 819, 312.49 at the end of 2020 as against a projected income of GHc4, 512, 668.69 within the period.
The Board Chairman, however, observed that the twin factors – the financial sector clean-up and COVID-19 pandemic – did not bring the Union to its needs saying, “we posted a net surplus of GH? 425, 600.38 as against our planned level of GHc 259, 573.01 for the year”.
“Total expenditure was GHc3, 393, 712.11 which represented 20 per cent below the budget. This was due to tight expenditure management practices employed by Management and a cut back of some of the plans for the year”, he explained.
Mr Seidu noted that the Union recorded an asset size growth rate of 25 per cent within the year under review, bringing its total asset to GHc29, 144,370.72 at the end of 2020 from GH23, 183,103.78 recorded in 2019.
The AGM also approved a strategic plan and budget for the next 5 years, 2021-2025 as part of its development drive.
The plan includes; introduction of a USSD code and mobile wallet integration to help bring its services closer to members, increasing the minimum share from GHc100.00 to GHc150.00, and the rollout of new saving and deposit products to provide varieties of services to members.
Others were; deploying agency banking modules to other parts of the region without the union’s office and promoting youth savings club activities in schools among others.
The Supervisory Committee of the Union urged members to take advantage of its numerous products and invest to help sustain and develop the Union.
Currently, WACCU had a total of 14,532 members, – 5,730 females, 7,221 males, and 1,581 groups and organisations – with 99 per cent of the members being fully paid up with the minimum share of ghc100.00.