THT 10 years ago: ‘Extend financial services to destitute people’

Kathmandu, September 20, 2006

Micro-finance experts today urged concerned authorities to increase access of financial services to disadvantaged sections of the people across the country to improve their economic status.

Tory Clawson, country director of Save the Children USA, speaking at a programme on ‘Building Inclusive Financial System for Economic Development’ spoke of the need to increase access of financial services to women and disadvantaged sections of people in Nepal, particularly in the context of inclusive democracy in Nepal.

Clawson said it is the first time that Save the Children USA is focusing on the economic sector in a bid to increase access of deprived people to resources, as they also possess creative and useful ideas for increasing economic activities in the society.

Tulasi Prasad Uprety, board member of the Centre for Micro-finance, mentioned about inclusive financial services for economic development in Nepal. Uprety said that an inclusive financial service does not exclude poor and low-income people from accessing credit, insurance, remittances and savings.

He stressed on the fact that social inclusion demands accessing financial services to groups and communities that are not being easily included in socio-political framework such as Dalits and indigenous people.

Uprety said that banks are concentrated mostly in urban and semi-urban areas.

CIAA seeks regional offices to fight graft

Submitting the annual report of the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority (CIAA) to the Prime Minister for the first time today, chief of the CIAA, Surya Nath Upadhyaya, called on PM Girija Prasad Koirala to set up regional offices of the CIAA in all five development regions so as to launch a nationwide anti-corruption campaign effectively.

“The District Administration Offices and the Regional Administration Offices are not focusing on checking corruption,” Upadhyaya said, stressing the need to set up the regional offices. “Only by setting the regional offices can the CIAA launch an anti-corruption drive effectively,” Upadhyaya said.

Upadhyaya and other CIAA commissioners had gone to the official residence of the PM to hand him the report. Receiving the report, Koirala appreciated CIAA commissioners for discharging their duties even during difficult times.

The CIAA used to submit annual reports to the King. The CIAA had urged the Special Court to seize Rs 600 million from those found embezzling state funds in the fiscal year 2062-63. The anti-graft body had field 108 cases in the court.

In the fiscal year 2061-62, the CIAA had called on the court to seize Rs 1.75 billion from those who were found embezzling the state funds.