Ensuring banking inclusivity and financial soundness

• By Ester Kali

LETSHEGO Bank has an inclusive finance agenda that is focused on providing underserved customers with access to simple, appropriate and accessible financial solutions. Letshego continues to progress its inclusive finance agenda through engaging stakeholders, and advocating for enabling financial inclusion policies as well as piloting agricultural, educational and affordable housing lending projects. It supplements this with a financial literacy programme across key customer segments and into communities in which it operates.

Letshego has been able to remain inclusive since it first began operations. The message of ‘true customer service excellence can only come with inclusion,’ is constantly reiterated to its internal stakeholders as they continue their day to day operations. That is to say, the same quality of care must be extended to everyone, equally. In customer service, an inclusive culture encompasses a diverse audience and ensures equitable access to help. It removes barriers and helps serve any customers, anywhere.

As a commercial institution, Letshego does not solely focus on just offering a service but, also seeks to effectively meet the customer’s needs. It is only by being committed to meeting the needs of all its customers, weaving it into a company’s culture and representing their needs at every level can customer inclusivity happen.

Commercial banks such as Letshego broadly contribute to Namibia’s overall financial soundness. Safeguarding the financial soundness of a country requires challenges that exist to be interrogated and constantly reviewed. The macroeconomic challenges we faced has now been exacerbated by the global pandemic and now more than ever the soundness of our banking and financial systems will be tested for its robustness.

In conclusion, “financial soundness is important so that the system in itself does not become a source of economic shock, but remain characterised by predictability, integrity and has sufficient controls in place to mitigate operational risks,” once said by Sanderson Abel.

*Ester Kali is CEO Letshego Bank