Friday, January 03, 2014

Muranga’s Shillingi kwa Shillingi

Kenyan counties are expected to raise funds for some of their activities to and this is crucial as many counties will not able to fund their operations and programs with the funds allocated to them by the national government. 

Muranga County Government has an interesting vehicle called Shillingi kwa Shillingi (translated as shilling by shilling) through which they intend to mobilize resources from Murang'a residents (and the Murang'a diaspora)  by targeting a total of 100,000 people who will save an average amount of Kshs 3,000 ($35) per month towards a goal of raising Ksh3.6 billion ($42 million) a year 

The invitation states that the ultimate objective is to match every shilling received from national government with an equal shilling contributed by the people of Murang'a through savings, hence the "Shillingi kwa Shillingi" concept ... (and the) savings will be used in development projects such as real estate, property development, commercial power generation, agro-processing, trading and any other social and economically viable projects in Muranga and beyond.

There have been newspaper and TV ads for the Shillingi program which have been careful to sidestep a caution by the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) on unlicensed investment solicitations to the public, by stating that the Shillingi contributors are members who are saving (the more they save, the more shares they get), but they are not investors who expect a dividend.

This is a novel undertaking spearheaded by the Murang'a Governor, and one which more counties should emulate once they see how it works.  The investments will be overseen by a respected audit firm, Deloitte, who have been appointed as project managers and Safaricom Business are the ICT partner who will handle SMS registration and M-Pesa collections, but savings payments can also be made through Equity, Cooperative and Jamii Bora banks.

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