KAMPALA – Victoria University and Stanbic Bank Uganda have unveiled to students’ community a new financing scheme aimed at supporting blended learning by enabling students acquire laptops on hire purchase basis.
The much sought-after scheme has been launched Monday August 22, and according to Stanbic Bank Uganda Executive Director Emma Mugisha, the arrangement will provide student financing for the purchase of laptops to enable learners carry out their research projects and other assignments.
In her remarks, Ms. Mugisha said the pandemic has changed the way learning is delivered to students and “we must adjust to this new normal.”
During lockdown, she said, universities resorted to online teaching, but students didn’t have laptops to partake in digital classes—through this scheme, Stanbic Bank is providing a future readiness solution.
She added the arrangement was part of Stanbic’s pioneering spirit of recognising the challenge and desiring to be part of the solution.
“This initiative is also one way of walking the talk of our business purpose—Uganda is home, we drive her growth. When education services reopened after two years of inactivity, Stanbic was the only bank that waived all unpaid accumulated interest on loans owed by schools, up to December 2021; we shall continue to play this corporate leadership role,” she said.
Dr. Lawrence Muganga, the Vice Chancellor at Victoria University commended Stanbic Bank for willingly agreeing to support the acquisition of laptops by students eager to embrace digital learning.
“If our students cannot do digital learning, then who is going to push our country into the digital era?”
He said majority of student’s population at Victoria University have the potential to take advantage of this offering.
He urged the student leadership to sensitize the student community to take advantage of this unique offering.
“With the computer and with data, you are truly a global citizen, you can attend classes from any university,” Muganga said.
He said, Africa is on the move, mainly because of the large number of young and brilliant people.
According to Stanbic Bank, students seeking to acquire financing for new laptops will have to do so through their parents or guardians by filling out a form obtainable at any Stanbic Bank branch across the country.
The scheme will be managed through FlexiPay—an all-in-one digital solution that allows customers who have downloaded the application, to make charge free payments efficiently with real time reconciliation and easy tracking.
“With the most affordable laptop priced at UGX2.1 million, one can now access a loan and pay UGX58,000 in monthly installments over a three-year period. Parents are allowed to do early repayment of the loan without being charged,” Stanbic said officials explained.
Parents who are Stanbic Bank customers simply have to apply for an unsecured loan of up to UGX5million and once approved, the details of the student are sent to the contracted vendor who then delivers the laptop to the beneficiary.
To circumvent risks such as theft and damage, the bank will have all laptops purchased under the scheme, fully insured.
The Vice Chancellor also reminded the students community that the University had, in a bit to make digital learning affordable, since the COVID-19 lockdown, made arrangements with MTN and Airtel to zero-rate Makerere‘s online platforms.