Expert Tells FG To Support Microfinance Banks

The federal government has been urged to give the necessary support to the microfinance banks in the country with a view to alleviating poverty among the people, especially the rural dwellers.

The Mananging Director/Chief Executive Officer of the Mainsail Microfinance Bank, Alhaji Taofeek Gbolagade Rahman, while speaking at? a customers’ forum in Ibadan last week, said that government should channel its empowerment programme through the microfinance banks since they were very close to the people.

He identified challenges faced by the banks to include inadequate funding, government policies and inability of the banks to analyse the businesses of their customers.

While noting that Mainsail Microfinance Bank would not depend on collateral before giving out loans to interested customers, he said that it would focus on the businesses brought by the customers.

“The bank will? focus on the growth and development of the customers’ businesses to pay the loan rather than collecting collateral,” he said.

Speaking on the proposed trust fund for the microfinance bank by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), he said that government should pump the money through microfinance banks “as only the rich people still benefit from such funds.”

According to him, government could? put in place policies that would make the microfinance banks to reach out to the poor masses, especially the petty traders.

Rahman noted that the support of the government would enhance the banks’ capacity as many people would be empowered with a view to addressing the issue of insecurity in the country.

He said that such money, if given to the microfinance banks, should not be seen as another? national cake but as a grant or loan which should be channelled through them and given to the masses at a lower rate.?