MARACHA. Maracha district officials have launched teachers’ savings and credit cooperative organization (SACCO).

The SACCO that will accommodate all the 1, 057 teachers of primary and secondary schools in the district was launched during a financial literacy education organized for headteachers at Maracha parish headquarters on Tuesday.

Each teacher from the district will be compelled to pay shs10, 000 as membership fee and also buy shares at shs10, 000.

The SACCO which was opened with support from a Germany nongovernmental organization (NGO) dubbed savings banks foundation for international cooperation (SBFIC) will be used to impart saving culture among the teachers.

During the occasion, the trainers advised the participants to value savings even if they are shareholders in order to borrow loans.

Maracha Woman Member of Parliament (MP) Ms Rose Ayaka while presiding over the launch of the SACCO thanked the office of the district education department for accepting to partner with the bank to begin the SACCO.

“Be practical than being theoretical on savings to fight poverty. We are going to do a lot of training to make the SACCO grow and it will make the district exemplary in the region,” Ms Ayaka pledged.

She said having a SACCO for teachers in the district may attract the President’s interest to support it on grounds that he recently stressed the need for merging SACCO groups operated by people with similar specialization and businesses so as to get grants from the government.

The MP also advised the teachers to include things like value addition in their plans and vowed to lobby for donors to fund such projects with ministries or NGOs.

She encouraged the teachers union branch officials of the district and the education office to work together to popularize the SACCO for teachers in all the schools with the aim of fighting exploitation by financial institutions that are charging exorbitant interest over loans.

Meanwhile, Ms Flavia Osoa, the Maracha district education officer (DEO) urged teachers to decisively implement the resolutions agreed in the formation of the SACCO to enable it to expand and succeed.

“Let's end the teachers’ absenteeism due to evading arrest by financial institutions after defaulting payment of loans,” Ms Osoa advised.

Mr Pascal Bwambale, an official from the Uganda cooperative savings and credit union cautioned the members against politicizing and de-campaigning the program that may cause disintegration of the SACCO since teachers are the first victims of challenges of borrowing loans.

The interim chairperson for the SACCO, Mr Valario Alija cautioned the members against over-excitement than focusing on the sustainability of the SACCO.

The interim committee elected to begin the operation of the SACCO include; Mr Valerio Alija, the headteacher of Koriba primary school as the chairperson deputized by Mr Bismack Aliga, the headteacher of Yivu primary school.

Mr Valario Alija 24 07 19Mr Valario Alija stresses a point during the launch of the SACCO. PHOTO BY GEOFFREY ANGUPALE

Ms Betty Draru, the headteacher Oleba primary school was elected as the treasurer while Mr Bosco Adrimundu, the headteacher Ojapi primary school was elected unopposed as the SACCO secretary.

Other headteachers elected as members of the interim committee include; Ms Milka Adiru of Galia primary school, Mr Samuel Draku of Anyivu primary school, Mr Lawrence Aceku of Nyoro primary school, Mr Robinson Anguyo of Kijomoro primary school and Mr Johnson Moroga of Bura primary school.