She commended the RCB Board and management for their relentless work towards attracting more people to having easier access to credible, sustainable and home-grown banks like the Rokel Commercial Bank which offers wide range of services to their customers.
Governor Bank of Sierra Leone, Dr. Patrick Conteh reiterated the BSL’s supervisory role over the years, adding that the RCB has been very cooperative and mindful of BSL directives aimed at revamping the economy through innovative banking services, procedures and interventions.
Similarly, Chairman National Privatization Commission, Umaru Napoleon Koroma made salient remarks about the privatization process, citing RCB as a wholly-owned Sierra Leone bank which is always here to serve the nation, unlike some other banks which folded up when things were not in their favor. He called on the banks’ board and management to continue the good work.
In his brief but very interesting speech, RCB MD Dr. Gilpin said apart from rebranding the bank and how it transacts its business to make it more attractive and bring the bank closer to the people, they also looked at raising the moral of the bank’s staff.
He added that studies have shown that there is a dearth of banking experience in Sierra Leone with about 80% of the population not having bank accounts. He noted however that at least 76% of Sierra Leoneans especially the youth can boast of a mobile phone.
He informed his audience that the idea was that if people can own a phone, why not connect them to the bank through their phones and so the idea of Sim Korpor emerged. Dr. Gilpin added that with this innovation, the ordinary okada rider, trader, street hawker, student, farmer, housewife and any other person who cannot access a bank easily to save money or to transact any other business now has the opportunity to do so through the RCB Sim Korpor service which is available across Sierra Leone wherever there is an RCB presence.
Taking the cue from her boss to sensitize the guests, Mrs. Kezia Salonkole, Head of RCB Sim Korpor Department explained how it works and how it can benefit subscribers. She stated among other things that Sim Korpor service will help reduce the normal long queues at the bank and that all normal transactions like withdrawing, depositing cash, remittance, paying utility bills and generally performing any financial including sending and receiving e-cheques can be done through RCB Sim Korpor as long as the customer has an account with the RCB.
She explained further that special security features make it impossible for anyone to access the account in the event the owner loses his or her phone. She used the opportunity to call on all Sierra Leoneans that do not have bank accounts to open one with the RCB in order to enjoy modern banking facilities with relative ease and speed. She stated that there are two main ways to be eligible for Sim Korpor; through a SIM overlay or by downloading the app from the Google play store, adding that android phones and ordinary phones can be used for this transaction, stressing that the service is only applicable within the borders of Sierra Leone.
Other prominent speakers at the auspicious occasion which took place on Saturday 28th July, 2018 at the RCB Murray Town branch included Mrs. Mariama Jajua who gave the welcome address; Councilor Abu Bakar Nylander Kargbo who chaired the occasion, MOBINET Managing Director Andrew Otiko who spoke on the RCB mobile application for Sim Korpor, among others.
The climax of the event was a music and dance drama by Jane Peters and Team. Sfano and his team also made an appearance.
The RCB Managing Director, Dr. Gilpin is a Sierra Leonean who has worked in several renowned financial management institutions for about thirty five years, beginning first with the Bank of Sierra Leone (BSL) before traveling abroad to work in other capacities in international financial institutions in countries across all the continents.
In an earlier interview with AYV he said since he was appointed Managing Director of RCB his main thrust has been to rebrand the bank and how it relates with the general public as well as helping to change the negative perception people generally hold of banking and banks in general.