Nyeri County leads in hustler fund repayment

Simon Kiprono Chelugui Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Co-operatives & Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises( MSMEs) speaking during KUSCO @50 years anniversary celebrations. [Wilberforce Okwiri, Standard]

Nyeri County tops the list with the highest Hustler Fund loan repayment Co-operatives and MSME Development Cabinet Secretary Simon Chelugui has said.

According to Chelugui, the county leads with 76.3 per cent out of Sh21.2 billion loans repaid followed by Kiambu at 75.3 per cent and at third place is Nyandarua at 74.5 per cent.

Nairobi boasts the highest number of subscribers, 2 million is fourth with a repayment rate of 73.8 per cent.

Other counties in the top 10 include Laikipia at 73.6 per cent, Nandi at 73.5 per cent, Muranga at 73.3 per cent, Embu at 73.1 per cent, Uasin Gishu at 73.1 per cent and Nakuru at 72.9 per cent.

Nationally, the repayment rate stands at 69 per cent with the majority of borrowers being men while in terms of age, the majority are youths.

"More men borrow Hustler Fund compared to women at 66 per cent and 34 per cent respectively while in terms of age, the youth who fall between 18-29 years leads the chart of borrowers with 38.5 per cent," said Cheluguyi.

"Those between 30-39 follows at 28.8 per cent and those between 40-49 per cent have so far recorded a 17.5 per cent borrowing rate."

According to Chelegui, the numbers are impressive as they are improving the saving culture that the government seeks to achieve with the fund.

So far out of the Sh31.5 billion disbursed Sh1.5 billion has been saved while the ministry has disbursed Sh20 million to over 170,360 groups.

Nairobi County leads with the highest number of registered groups, 10,957 followed by Trans Nzoia which boasts 9,792 groups and in third position is Meru County with 9, 647 groups.

According to Chelegui, for personal loans, the majority of the beneficiaries are those using "mulika mwizi" while the group loans have been disbursed more to smartphone users.

"While more Kenyans use Mulika Mwizi (55 per cent) than the smartphone (45 per cent) in the personal product, the smartphones turn the table when it comes to the group's product which was recently launched. In the group product, 56 per cent of subscribers used the smartphone to access the facility while 44 per cent used Mulika Mwizi," the CS said.

The Hustler Fund project was launched five months ago by President William Ruto and has attracted over 20 million users with 7 million of them having borrowed and repaid more than once.

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