By Chikondi Magalasi – Nation Newspaper Contributor
Youths from Phalombe District have asked government to consider increasing Malawi Enterprise Development Fund (Medf) loans.
The plea comes at a time youth clubs, women groups and individuals have started getting loans from Medf.
In an interview yesterday, Lameck Lamwa a beneficiary under Alinafe youth club from traditional authority Kaduya in Phalombe said their club applied for K3 million but received Mk1.5 million.
“The money isn’t sufficient because we shared it among 20 members. Our capital is little to do a profitable business,” he said.
Another beneficiary Charles Pendame who got Mk65,000 loan said government should revisit some of the programme’s guidelines.
“The capital is too small. We will visit Medf officers and tell them that we won’t manage to start repaying the loan soon,” he said.
In a separate interview Phalombe District Youth Network Chairperson Luka Wyson said he woukld ask authorities to address the youth’s concerns.
MEDF Public Relations and Marketing Officer Whytone Kapasule said the institution gives out money according to the nature and size of businesses which beneficiaries indicated in their application.
“There are factors that determine the amount of loan we approve to our clients and these are the size of the business, the nature of the business, seasonality of the loan and capacity to repay. For example, someone running a barbershop at Chinsapo can ask for a K500, 000 loan but his own capital is K30,0000, through credit appraisal which looks at different factors including costs of running a barbershop, we cannot give that client the whole K500, 000 because of the size of that business,” Kapasule said.
MEDF has so far disbursed around Mk 7 billion out of Mk8 billion to beneficiaries in the country.
However, presenting a four-month provisional national budget last week, Minister of Finance Felix Mlusu said government has increased the Medf loans to K40 billion.
This story came out in the Nation Newspaper dated July 8, 2020.