ICT AGENCY OPENS UP TO MORE FINANCIERS IN NEW PASHA SCHEME.

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The Kenya ICT Authority is on a working progress to open up its small business programme to more financiers ending an arrangement where it previously worked with a single bank project.

This comes as the authority is set to restart issuing subsidized loans in June for setting up digital centres after controversy stalled the scheme. The authority will henceforth use multiple banks in loan provision as opposed to previous engagement with sole financier Family Bank.

Sole financier model was restrictive and thus limited the choice of applicants in terms of where to get loans; however the authority will now work with about three banks in which the ICT authority is deliberating to further cut the interest rate among other changes in the earlier financing model.

The fund programme dubbed Pasha established in 2011 looks into digital villages; electronic shops, cyber cafes, printing bureaus and recording studios that could offer agency banking and mobile money services. The initiative however experienced setbacks previously and plans to conduct a pilot for a new model to avoid further problems.

The soon to be revamped stall project will have revenues generated from the businesses translate to better welfare with the digital villages operating under a franchisor, a firm which will procure pre-negotiated products on behalf of Pasha managers.

“We will list a number of products that will be mandatory for Pasha managers to include in their centres. This will ensure standardization and coordination of the Pasha, making it easy to manage them,” said project manager Kwame Shiroya.