THE high rate of drunkenness and selfishness among men has reduced their participation in the community savings and credit programme in Sinda district, says Churches Health Association of Zambia (CHAZ) field officer, Develious Zulu
Speaking to 384 members from 18 savings clubs called Village Bank at Mwasiti RCH Primary School at the weekend, Mr Zulu said that according to data collected, women had progressed well compared to men.
He said the poor faring of men, apart from taking too much to the bottle, included their shyness and selfishness.
He explained that the aim of CHAZ and Government’s involvement in the programme was to ensure poverty levels were reduced in families and communities.
He told the gathering that the programme, which started five years ago with 30 groups in 2012, now boasted of 240 village banking clubs performing well.
“We have clocked five years from the time we started and out of the 240 clubs we have, the high number of members doing well are females.
“We also realize that men are the heads of the households but the unfortunate part is that as men we have proved to be selfish, shy and lazy in community group meetings,” said Mr Zulu.
He urged men to show leadership by ensuring that they cooperated with their wives in the banking initiative.
Mr Zulu said that some families had failed to develop under village banking because of the unfavourable attitude by some spouses.
He said that lack of financial knowledge among members had also contributed to negativity in some groups.
He said most women who started the business were progressing well while others had built houses out of the programme while supporting the education of their children.
Mr Zulu warned members against over-borrowing because that would create problems when paying back.
And a female member Margaret Musilizo advised men to avoid hiding money in their underwear as that did help their families, adding that husbands should give money to their wives instead of forcing women to look for money outside their homes.
“As women we have a heart for business but we face a major challenge where men in our homes fail to support us. Even when they have money you find that they hide it in ‘bombasas’; now if they don’t support us, who will?
“Should we go outside our homes to look for capital? We can’t all do that. All we need is support from our husbands,” she said
And Mr Zulu expressed disappointment that some civil servants paid by Government influence poor people to borrow money on their behalf.
And area Chieftainess Nyanje’s representative, Induna Scout Phiri, called on families to embrace the programme so that it continued to uplift the standards of families and communities in rural areas.