The government, through Uwezo fund disbursed Sh. 11, 269, 000 to 97 groups that had applied for the fund in Narok County in 2020/21 Financial Year.
Narok County Director of Youth Affairs Joash Ratemo said among the six sub counties Narok North took the lion’s share; Sh. 3 million to benefit 24 groups.
“Sh. 2.9 million was allocated to 41 groups in Narok South, Sh. 2 million to 17 groups in Narok East, Sh. 810, 000 to four groups in Narok West, Sh. 500, 000 went to five groups in Trans Mara East while six groups benefited with Sh. 2 million in Trans Mara West Sub County,” he analyzed.
Ratemo who spoke to KNA in his office said a total of Sh. 120 Million had been distributed to the youth, women groups and persons living with disability since 2014.
Nevertheless, the youth officer lamented over the many loans defaulters complaining they had hindered other needy groups from benefiting.
He said only 35 per cent of previous beneficiaries had fully serviced their loans which is below the average required for continual disbursement of the money in counties.
“The regulations set by the government require over 50 per cent of the money given as uwezo fund in the county to be refunded before more people benefit. Currently we are not issuing any money because of the high percentage of defaulters,” he said.
He thus appealed to those who are yet to repay the money to do so immediately so that they can qualify for more, normally double the amount of the preceding loan.
“The minimum amount that a new group can get is Sh. 50, 000 and maximum is Sh. 100, 000, however, if they repay the loan they get double the initial amount meaning the more people repay the money, the more money they get,” said Ratemo.
He said efforts by his office to reach out to the specific defaulters have been futile as most of them don’t pick calls while others have changed their phone numbers.
Asked whether Covid-19 pandemic has affected the loans repayment, the youth officer answered to the contrary saying most of the defaulters got the money in 2014 and were to start repaying it after a six months grace period hence they should have repaid before covid set in.
By Ann Salaton