S Maganga & R Chirombo - The Daily Times

The Bankers Association ol Malawi (BAM) and its affiliate, the Institute of Bankers in Malawi (IOB) on Friday, 6 September 2013 held an annual dinner and dance and graduation ceremnony in Blantyre. 

The dinner and dance was held under thc theme "Role of banks in financial inclusion." 

BAM President William Chatsala said the event acts as a get together where bankers converge to share experiences for the past year and plans for the year ahead. 

"Every year around this time, we get together, have a meal, a drink, but also Iook at activities that have happened in the banking industry in the last 12 months and take a look at what we are doing in the next 12 months," Chatsala said. 

He cited the on-going implementation of the Basal II risk management system by all banks in the country as the major activity for the year. 

Chairperson of the Business Developtnent Sub-Committee Lillian Kawaza mentioned a MK3.6 million donation of farm imputs to a community project in Thyolo as one of the association's success stories for the year. 

She further said the bankers were thinking of establishing a banking week during which they could be showcasing their services. 

During the event, the newly elected Pro-Vice Chancellor of the University of Malawi, Alfred Ntenje, also presented awards to best banking certificate and diploma graduates. 

The awardees were part of the 160 students who had graduated earlier in the day after completing their studies with the IOB. 

Speaking at the graduation ceremony for the I0B earlier in the day, Chatsala, who is also IOB's chairperson, challenged the graduates to maintain high levels of professionalism and integrity in line with demands of the banking industry. 

" Banking is a very dynamic industry [and] ther will be many more achievements to work for. In a rapidly changing world, you will have to be able to adapt to changing times," Chatsala said.

He also said the institute had made strides in improving the course curriculum in conjunction with Unima, a development that had helped it increase the number of 
students and qualification levels. 

On his part, Mtenje, hailed lOB for developing tailor-made courses and playing an important role in development. He said financial institutions play a crucial role in national economies. 

At the ceremony, students from Management Development Centre- an arrn of The Polytechnic, a constituent college of the University of Malawi (Unima), graduated with certificates, diplomas, and advanced diplomas in various disciplines of banking.