John Mwaka, Chief Executive Officer at Kenya's Sacco Societies Regulatory Authority, and Norbert Mumba, AFI's Deputy Executive Director

Youth, Gender & IGF highlighted in meeting with SASRA, Kenya

The Chief Executive Officer of Kenya's Sacco Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA), John Mwaka, met AFI Deputy Executive Director Norbert Mumba on 6 November in Nairobi, to discuss how best to strengthen support and collaboration between two institutions, as well as the latest developments in the AFI network.

Topics included financial inclusion of youth, gender and inclusive green finance (IGF), as well as the endorsement by AFI membership of Kigali Statement on Accelerating Financial Inclusion of the Disadvantaged Groups, all main themes and highlights of the 2019 Global Policy Forum (GPF) in Kigali, Rwanda.

SASRA’s CEO Mwaka expressed satisfaction with the benefits arising from its AFI membership, especially in capacity building services that have greatly contributed to upscaling the skills of SASRA staff. He conveyed further SASRA’s interest in AFI assistance through technical support, knowledge sharing and peer learning, specifically on credit guarantee schemes that SASRA is currently looking to develop.  

Deputy Executive Director Mumba highlighted AFI’s work on gender and IGF as two areas where SASRA can greatly benefit having in mind its responsibility to licence and supervise savings and credit cooperatives (SACCOs).

IGF is an evolving policy area in which AFI member institutions are devising and implementing policies, regulations and national strategies to mitigate or build resilience to the sweeping environmental, health, social and economic effects of climate change. Through its work on gender inclusive finance, embedded in the Denarau Action Plan, AFI members are working on narrowing financial inclusion gender gap, which remains at persistent 9 percent in developing countries, as well as pushing for greater gender diversity in the workplace.

An associate member of AFI since 2013, SASRA is a semi-autonomous government agency under Kenya’s Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives.  Apart from SACCO licencing and supervision, SASRA aims to protect the interests of SACCO members, ensure public confidence in the SACCO sector and encourage Kenya’s economic growth by mobilizing domestic savings.

Kenya’s two other AFI member institutions are Central Bank of Kenya, a principle member since 2009, and Retirement Benefits Authority of Kenya, an associate member since 2014. Kenya’s primary thematic areas of Maya Declaration commitments on financial inclusion include credit information system, consumer protection, financial inclusion data, digital financial services, consumer empowerment & market conduct.

Together with Central Bank of Kenya, AFI is currently co-hosting a member training in Nairobi on Regulatory and Supervisory Framework for Digital Credit for 53 senior officials who are working on developing policies on digital credit. Training participants represent 35 member institutions from all AFI regions. SASRA’s staff is also attending the training.