By Candia Stephen
Arua-Barely eight months into the business in Arua town, Equity Bank has launched a new strategy to grow its relationship base in the district and the region.
During a launch dinner held at Desert Breeze hotel in Arua on Friday, the deputy executive director Equity Bank Uganda Anthony Kituuka applauded the people of Arua and West Nile for offering a warm ground for the Bank since its establishment eight months ago.
“As Equity Bank, we believe in building relationships with the people through championing socio-economic prosperity,” Kituuka said.
According to Kituuka, Equity Bank will make it easier for people to do banking by destroying geographical and physical barriers to banking and giving freedom, control and unmatched flexibility to the clients through provision of easy loans and establishment of Equity Dukas.
Simon Avutia, the branch manager Arua revealed that for the last eight months the bank has experienced a steady growth in its business, a situation he says has prompted the management to launch a relationship dinner for the people of Arua and West Nile.
The Bank Manager for Arua, Simon Avutia discuss with the Deputy ED, Anthony Kituuka. Photos by Felix & Aluma
Oundo Alex, a customer of Equity Bank testified that because of the relationship strategy of the bank, he has been able to grow his business to 14-employees, adding that having trust in a bank is key to one’s fast development.
Meanwhile Caroline Lilly Ochanda, another business woman and a member of Arua Women Entrepreneurs Association commended Equity Bank for been responsive to customers.
Speaking at the dinner, the LC 5 chairman Maracha district said lack of a financial institution in the district has made it difficult for the people to grow their businesses. He called on Equity Bank to set up a branch in the district so as to help it grow.
Meanwhile the Mayor Arua Municipality Isaa Kato applauded the bank for positively transforming the lives of the people of Arua and West Nile and urged other development partners to emulate such strategies.
The RDC Arua Peter Debele urged development partners to make use of the prevailing peace in the country to invest adding that the baseline for any development is the existence of peace and urged the people to take advantage of financial institutions to borrow money for proper use.
The Bishop of Madi and West Nile Diocese Charles Collins Andaku and Alphonse Wathokudi of Nebbi Diocese, who graced the dinner welcomed the plan by Equity Bank to build a church house in Arua. “As you expand, we are also waiting for you in Nebbi because I feel sad that the district is among the poorest in the country after Karamoja. We should unite to fight poverty at households,” he said.
Equity Bank was established in 1984 in Muranga town in Kenya and has now expanded to Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, DRC and South Sudan with over 12-million customers, more than shs.18-Trillion asset base and over 30,000 stakeholders.
Arua town currently has over 20 banks and micro finance institutions and this has been attributed to the growing cross-border business with DRC and South Sudan.