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Bank provides coffee workers chance to save

Highlands

By TONY PALME
TWO plantation workers from the Bunum Wo WR Carpenters Estate in Jiwaka are thankful to Bank South Pacific and the PNG Agriculture Sector Labourers’ Association (PNGASLA) for giving them the chance to save their money.
Rebecca Paul, a coffee dryer, and Evelyn Erick, a picker, who are both from Kagua in Southern Highlands, but live and work at the coffee plantation with their families, deposited K1000 each last Saturday into their new bank accounts.
They are members of the association who joined others to open up their accounts two Saturdays ago.
The women’s deposits were the highest amount deposited by any member of the association.
Paul said she was relieved after putting her hard earned cash into the bank.
“Now I will not worry about my money being stolen, getting burnt in a fire or expect anything bad to happen.
“I can now focus on working hard to increase savings.”
Alo Basua, a driver in the plantation, also from Kagua, deposited K400, the second highest amount.
Association president Gugl Peter Sylvester said workers had cash but never had any banking opportunities.
He thanked the BSP team from Mt Hagen and Jiwaka who gave up their free time for two weekends to help the workers.
“God will bless you (BSP) in His own ways. Words can’t express how happy we are,” Sylvester said.
“These people have been motivated to save and they want to work hard for the company now.
“I am also grateful to the company for their understanding.
“It’s a win-win situation.”
Sylvester urged other workers who opened their accounts but did not register to become a PNGASLA member to avoid being left out of other BSP services that will be rendered to the association.
BSP team leader Josephine Aiwa said they were willing to help people in the other plantations that were members of the association.
“Life is very short and we live once. The short time that we have, we must spend it to help God’s people. These plantation workers’ are God’s people,” she said.
Aiwa confirmed that the workers from Bunum Wo will next receive financial literacy training.
There will also be a BSP agency that will allow them to deposit or withdraw money.

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