Money Month Lesotho Campaign launched



MASERU – The Central Bank of Lesotho in partnership with different stakeholders, launched money month campaign in Mohale’s Hoek yesterday. This year’s campaign is held under the theme ‘Protect Your Money, Secure Your Future’. Money month Lesotho is part of the global money week campaign which normally takes place annually around March. This year’s money month is hosted from April 11 to May 11 in Mohale’s Hoek.

Lesotho’s campaign is aligned to Global Money Week (GMW) which is meant to promote efforts aimed at improving the financial literacy of young people. The ultimate goal of the campaign is to ensure that all children and young people have access to high-quality financial education; learn about money matters; and, are able to take smart financial decisions that can improve their future financial resilience and financial well-being.

Throughout 11 editions, starting in 2012, the campaign has reached over 60 million children and young people in 176 countries worldwide. The GMW2024 theme, “Protect your money, secure your future”, focuses on safe money management and highlights the importance of adopting a responsible and informed approach to personal finances by being aware of potential risks in the financial sector and protecting one’s hard-earned money.

Such risks may include financial scams and frauds, including phishing, money muling and online shopping scams, and risks related to data privacy, such as identity theft. Young people are especially likely to fall victim of financial frauds and scams, due to their limited financial literacy and experience, so money week is meant to spread information.

The GMW2024 Global Launch event took place in hybrid format on March 18, 2024 at the OECD Conference Centre in Paris. However, Lesotho made a decision to turn the money week into the money month, where CBL and various stakeholders, including government ministries, go to the selected districts with the aim of assisting the nation with relevant and necessary skills of handling money.

In his introductory address, Governor Dr Maluke Letete of CBL highlighted the inherent saving culture among Basotho. He illustrated this by referring to the past when Basotho used to preserve food for times of rain, and drew a parallel to the present where individuals employ contemporary and diverse methods of saving.

Additionally, he discussed the issue of indebtedness, emphasizing the detrimental effects of borrowing from unregistered financial institutions, which can lead to depression and even suicide. The Chief Executive Officer at Metropolitan Lesotho, Mamello Phomane, representing the Insurance Association of Lesotho, emphasized the purpose of insurance in mitigating risks, highlighting the availability of short-term and life insurance options.

She also spoke about the significance of this year’s theme in enhancing financial literacy and understanding the importance of money. “We need to know that there is nothing for free and understand exchange of value for value. This will help people not to be scammed,” she said, pleading to the people of Mohale’s Hoek to ask critical questions in order to avoid being scammed.

She emphasized the importance of simplifying money management, encouraging people to save small amounts and dispelling the notion that only large sums can be invested or saved. Looking at the previous year’s wrap up of the campaign revealed that it successfully reached a total of 346,287 individuals, with a particular emphasis on engaging the community of Butha Buthe as the main target audience.

It also showed that various communication channels were utilized by stakeholders to raise awareness among the public, resulting in a significant outreach through virtual platforms. Additionally, face-to-face interactions were carried out with the community, leading to a deeper impact despite lower numbers, and a better understanding of the financial difficulties faced by society.

The report highlighted challenges faced by individuals with disabilities, noting the lack of ATMs in the country that are accessible to them. Also, many young employees struggle to grasp the significance of saving, investing, and managing money effectively at their age as they perceive themselves as being too young to prioritise financial matters.

It further stated that the accomplishments of the Lesotho money month campaign are that there was active participation of industry leaders in the launch despite the distance. There was strong collaboration between FESC and all the key stakeholders in the district and there was increased participation by the financial industry, particularly in the form of participation. There was also a joint effort by the participating organizations to reduce the cost of implementing the event.

In the wrap up discussions, it was decided that educating the society on the appropriate way of handling money should not be something done once in a while because helping the nation better plan the future will make an immense improvement in the economy of the country.

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