By CHILA NAMAIKO –
MACHA residents in Choma have extolled Government for continuing to empower vulnerable women in rural areas with grants through the village banking scheme.
The scheme, recently launched in Southern Province by Government enables women to apply for soft loans individually, particularly those in rural areas to venture into viable projects.
Headman Lupata of Macha Chiefdom said the Government’s decision to empower the women through the scheme was a significant move in uplifting their welfare and fighting poverty.
The traditional leader said no Government in the world could provide its citizens with all necessities but that through such loan schemes, people could venture into self-enterprises.
He was speaking in Macha recently when Choma District Community Development officer Esther Siyumbwa handed over K25, 000 for women empowerment under the banking scheme.
“What Government is doing to uplift the living standards of poor women in rural areas is a commendable job because such loans are cardinal in helping to fight poverty,” he said.
Headman Lupata urged the Government to continue unfolding various empowerment projects that would subsequently foster tangible development in remote areas.
The headman, however, cautioned the beneficiaries to utilise the finances wisely and ensure that such development funds were used prudently to change their livelihoods.
Scores of women praised Government for its efforts in improving their living standards and appealed to other stakeholders to provide more developmental assistance.
Earlier, when she handed over the money, Ms Siyumbwa said Government’s desire was to see that women were assisted to start businesses and desist from being dependants.
She said Government had started various programmes in the country to enable women in rural areas be economically empowered to reduce poverty levels.
“Government is making concerted efforts to ensure that poverty levels among women are reduced and it is important that you use these resources prudently,” she said.
Ms Siyumbwa warned the beneficiaries that Government would not tolerate those found abusing the resources at the expense of using the funds for tangible developmental programmes.