Gender Analysis of the Patronage of Financial Services Provided by Rural Banks in Ghana (A Case of Nzema-Manle Rural Bank Ltd)

Wisdom Quaiku


Rural banking system in Ghana was introduced by the Bank of Ghana in 1976. Prior to the establishment of the first rural bank in Ghana, institutional credit and other formal financial services were not readily available to the people living and working in the rural communities to promote their businesses and development generally. The Government of Ghana, through the Bank of Ghana established rural banks to bring banking services to the doorsteps of rural dwellers. However, no study has specifically been undertaken to examine the gender dimension of patronage of services provided by rural and community banks in Ghana. Nzema-Manle Rural Bank Ltd, the leading bank among the two other banks in the three Nzema districts was selected for the study because of its large customer base and impressive performance. The study revealed that women were more dominance in the non-traditional deposit products of rural banks such as susu deposits as opposed to their men counterpart who showed a very impressive performance in the traditional deposit products such as savings and current accounts. It was observed that the susu products and savings mobilization instruments used by the rural banks are well suited to the savings needs of women who would either have to travel several kilometers before they could access banking services. On advances made by the bank, women once again put up impressive performance in the areas of susu and microfinance credit facilities, non-traditional products, of the bank. The impressive performance of women in susu and microfinance portfolios was attributed to the relative ease with which the facility could be accessed.

Keywords: Rural banks, Bank of Ghana, traditional product, non-traditional product, women, men, Nzema-Manle Rural Bank Ltd, susu, Rural and Community banks

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