Post Bank opens branch in Mafeteng

Post Bank opens branch in Mafeteng

Lemohang Rakotsoane

MAFETENG – LESOTHO Post Bank opened its 14th branch in Mafeteng last Thursday.

Managing Director Molefi Leqhaoe said the branch in Mafeteng is part of the bank’s quest to bring financial services closer to the people and enable economic growth.

“Lesotho Post Bank is a bank for Basotho hence we strived to ensure that we are available and provide banking services even where most banks are not willing to go,” Leqhaoe said at the official opening.

The bank’s priority is to help SMMEs grow and encourage a saving culture among Basotho, he said.

“We want to help our people to be financially literate so that they can be able to make wise financial decisions and be able to use the banking services profitably”.

He said to make it easier for Basotho to access and use banking services they have made their banking charges affordable.

Leqhaoe explained that the bank has also installed an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) to reduce queues in the bank.

The Central Bank of Lesotho Governor, Retšelisitsoe Matlanyane, said the branch is a milestone for Lesotho Post Bank.

Matlanyane said the CBL deliberately refused to grant the Post Bank consent to open the branch in Mafeteng six years ago because “we wanted to be certain of the bank’s growth”.

“We also didn’t want history to repeat itself. Though we were satisfied with the bank’s growth we realised that if we allowed it to expand that fast, it would hinder the bank’s sustainability,” Matlanyane said.

She said previous state-owned banks have been plagued by mismanagement.

This she said was made worse by the fact that Basotho were reluctant to repay their loans because they say the bank belongs to them.

But the Post Bank has reversed this trend, she said.

Matlanyane indicated that CBL also refused to let politicians appoint individuals to manage the bank.

“We wanted competent individuals who would be accountable, we cannot just gamble with people’s money,” Matlanyane said.

“We are grateful that the government listened to us and today the bank is also able to provide credit to its clients. We had licensed them to only provide savings services for a long time”.

She pleaded with the Lesotho Post Bank’s staff to be patient and to treat clients with respect as there is a tendency of mistreating customers, especially those deemed poor by service providers.

“We were not raised like that as Basotho. Respect should be given to everyone, be patient and explain and assist clients. Some are old and stubborn but it is your duty to assist them with respect and well,” Matlanyane said.

Ntaote Seboka, chairman of the Lesotho Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the branch in Mafeteng will make things easier for the business community.

Seboka said that Basotho should feel obliged to support Lesotho Post Bank as it is the only Basotho-owned bank “its success is our success, we should learn to support each other as Basotho”.

“We should also learn to be trustworthy. It is unfortunate that as Basotho when loaned money by the banks we do not pay back and by so doing we are making it difficult for others to get help,” Seboka said.

He pleaded with the staff of the bank to treat each client with respect regardless of their status.

“Business starts from nothing. Do not be irritated by their small deposits because one day their cents will turn into millions. There are a lot of businesses that were started from nothing but today they are big businesses,” Seboka said.

He further urged big businesses to support small businesses.

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