881,081 Nigerians, Businesses Access N503bn NIRSAL MFB Loans

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BY COBHAM NSA – NIRSAL Micro Finance Bank (NIRSAL MFB) says over N503 billion has so far been dished out as loan packages to about 881,081 Nigerians and businesses in the last two years.

According to the bank, most of these packages came from the Federal Government COVID-19 intervention fund meant to cushion the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic effect on households and small businesses across the country.

This is as the bank received awards and encomiums showered on it by 23 groups and organisations during the year in recognition of its efforts and commitment towards providing liquidity for seriously impacted households and businesses.

Available figures from NIRSAL MFB indicate that the bank has so far disbursed about N503,273,000,000 as loans to 1,053,215,837 beneficiaries that include individuals and families whose breadwinners lost their jobs in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The figure comprises 612,321 households that got loans ranging from N250,000 to N1 million totalling N240,083,000,000 and 103,185 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) that accessed loans valued at N104,023,000,000 between 2020 and December 2021.

Similarly, within the last one year, 21,027 households that are Non-Interest Beneficiaries (NIB) of NIRSAL MFB loans have secured facilities amounting to N9,091,000,000; Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) under the Non-Interest Scheme (NIB SME) numbering 2,710 have accessed N1,057,000,000; while 31,067 Agric Small Medium Enterprises Scheme (AGSMEIS) beneficiaries got N116,001,000,000 from NIRSAL MFB.

Furthermore, 105,244 Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) successful applicants got loans amounting to N31,001,000,000 while 5,527 Nigeria Youth Investment Fund (NYIF) have also drawn down about N1,009,000,000 as loan packages.

Among the 23 groups and agencies’ awards acknowledging NIRSAL MFB’s impressive performance in making loans available to Nigerians include: Public Service Bank of the Year 2021 Award from the National Public Service Awards and Summits; and The Most Innovative Fintech Brands from African Award 2020 by African Brand.

Others are Awards of Excellence by Rotary International and Nigerian Army Officers Wives Association of Nigeria (NAOWA); the Outstanding Performance towards Economic Development Award by the Sokoto Chamber of Commerce Industry and Mine; and Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Wing Association Award of Excellence and Youth Empowerment.

Also, appreciation of the bank came from the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria that conferred Awards of Excellence on the bank.

Speaking at the last Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting in Abuja, Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele had expressed MPC’s happiness with the Targeted Credit Facility (TCF) “for its contribution to alleviating poverty at the grassroots”.

He also said the MPC has canvassed that the apex bank continues its support through the TCF to ensure more people benefit from this programme.

Commenting on the awards and recognition showered on NIRSAL MFB, its Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Mr Abubakar Abdullahi Kure said; “NMFB makes sure that all the six- geopolitical zones are beneficiaries to promote financial inclusion”.

He also disclosed that in the bank’s loans’ disbursement portfolio, “women are also highly considered” as key beneficiaries.

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