Sekyere Rural Bank Makes Progress

The Sekyere Rural Bank Limited at Jamasi in the Ashanti Region has made some significant progress in all financial indicators for the 2010 year under review. The Bank made a profit before tax of a little over GH�779,460 in the 2010 year under review as against approximately GH�630,003 -- representing an increase of 23.72% over the previous year�s figure. The Bank could have even made more profits but for the high costs associated with the new banking software (eMerge T/24) as well as the capital outlay on the Bank�s Mamponteng and Agona branches. The Chairman of the Board of Directors, Mr. Kwame Dapaah Siakwan, announced this during the Bank�s 22nd Annual Shareholders� meeting held last Friday. According to him, the Bank registered a very satisfactory performance in all the performance indicators in spite of the major economic challenges posed by heightened local competition as well as the many negative effects on the operations of the Bank. He mentioned specifically that non-performing loans had serious consequences on the bank�s performance, but through hard work and prudent use of resources the Bank was able to make headway and improved on all key performing indicators during the year under review. The Bank�s deposit liabilities went up by 49.6% during the year. This, according to the Board Chairman, is quite remarkable and showed how the Bank was marketed in spite of keen competition in the banking environment. The Bank gave out loans and advances to the tune of GH�6,234,604 in the year under review as against GH�5,799,149 in 2009, which represents a marginal growth 7.51% between January and December 2010. One thing that is hindering the expansion of the Bank�s credit delivery is loan beneficiaries� apathy towards repayment. Management has been conducting effective loan-recovery exercises and appealed to loan defaulters to keep faith with them by paying their loans on time, but this has not yielded the expected results. Shareholders were given the assurance that everything possible would be done to improve upon the situation. The Bank�s investments in Government Papers and other allied investments with Discount Houses and Banks increased by 37.21%. Under its assets and liabilities management strategy, the Board felt this was good due to the continued lowering of discounts and interest on Treasury bills and other financial market instruments during the year under review. Total assets of the Bank expanded. It went up from GH�1,400,088.50 in 2009 to GH�1,938,822.80 in the year under review, a growth of 38.38% which compared favorably with some leading market players. Improved management of resources also went up by 20.66%, from GH�2,253,463 in 2009 to GH�2,719,094 in 2010. The Directors of the Bank have recommended dividend payment of GH�0.0029 per share for 2010. The total dividend proposed for the year under review is GH�141,503.35 The Bank continued to offer assistance to communities and institutions within its operational territories in terms of community development. A total amount of GH�5,265 was spent in this direction. Notable areas that benefitted include education and health. The Bank has an advanced plan to put up two libraries at Jamasi and Ahwiaa to cater for the vacuum created by the absence of such educational facilities in those communities. The Board Chairman in his concluding remarks acknowledged the commitment of the Board, Management and staff to the objectives of the Bank, recounting that their individual and collective efforts have culminated in the significant improvements of the Bank�s operational results for 2010.