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Apr 25, 2014, 10:37 AM | Article By: Halimatou Ceesay

The board of directors of the Banjul International Airport Co-operative Credit Union Thursday held its 11th Annual General Meeting (AGM) at the old terminal building of the Banjul International Airport on the theme: “Improved services to members”.

The meeting was held to approve the 2013 accounts and reports of the directors.

Speaking at the AGM, Lamin Cham, GIA commercial director, said credit union democratically controlled by its members and operated for the purpose of promoting thrift, providing credit at competitive rates and providing other financial services to its members.

He said BIACCU started at a corner office in GIA’s current import cargo office with very few members, and eleven years on, the current membership stands at 1103 with a larger office provided by GCAA opposite the old terminal building.

He said the services provided by BIACCU include, inter alia, helping its members save regularly, giving loans at a fair interest rate, and assisting members in time of difficulty.

He added that both GIA and GCAA have over the years provided assistance to the union in supporting its programmes, which include water and electricity provided by GIA and GCAA.

Patrick Mendy, deputizing for the General Manager of NACCUG, said the theme of NACCUG’s AGM “credit union was in line with Government’s commitment to poverty alleviation and the drive to providing the poor and the vulnerable access to microfinance services at their doorsteps.

He added that BIACCU is part of eleven credit unions to benefit from the new software for tracking savings and loans, saying the ABACUS system is a robust one and could take as many products as it could, which include opening account for school fees, festive periods, children and wives through payroll deduction or payment on the counter.

Baboucarr Fatty, chairman of BIACCU, said the theme was in line with the priorities of his board, adding that as a board they are conscious of the fact that membership satisfaction is crucial in the sustainable advancement of their movement.

He said credit unions are now facing challenges from other financial institutions and their innovativeness and creativity in providing better and rewarding products to their members.

He also said their credit union had witnessed impressive growth during the year under review owing to the recruitment of new security staff by the GCAA.

In their drive to equip BIACCU with a highly professional and skilled workforce, the board had facilitated the training of the manageress and her accountant in areas that add value to their work, he said.