The recent actions by the government of Bangladesh should be condemned in the strongest of manners. Despite Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s repeated attempts to discredit the record of Professor Muhammad Yunus, she has only succeeded in validating the attractiveness of a well-run microfinance organization.
The governmental takeover of Grameen bank stands squarely against the principles and standards upon which it was founded, and wipes out the borrower-led model that has been a shining star through the recent turmoil in the microfinance industry.
It is a shame to see the work of Prof. Yunus and the Grameen team attempt to be invalidated, but what the government of Bangladesh cannot take away is the strength, reputation, success, and promise of borrower-involved microfinance.
Microfinance lives on and is moving into the next phase of development – one with technology at the forefront to push the efficiency with which information is used. In Rwanda, MFIs are teaming up with global technology and software firms to bring MFI data to the cloud.
This forward thinking (similar to the heavier reliance on mobile payments) will be helpful in ensuring that those at the BoP obtain (and retain) access to the quality financial service they need and deserve.
Lastly, I’d like to give a big congratulations to Kiva for finally breaking down the barrier and gaining access to the nation of India. We, here at RisingPyramid, have been big advocates for Kiva to be allowed and operating in India. We look forward to hearing more great stories of the lives affected in India!