The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Tuesday expressed its concern about low participation of the South East region in its various economic intervention policies and programmes in the past few years, urging the leaders to encourage improved participation of their people in the programmes.
The apex bank’s Acting Director, Corporate Communications Department, Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, who made this known during CBN Fair in Enugu, stressed that CBN intervention programmes were meant to create jobs, engender financial inclusion and make the people have access to finance.
The spokesperson pointed out the need for Nigerians to leverage the intervention programmes of the apex bank to improve their socio-economic wellbeing had become more imperative now that the general price level (inflation rate) in the economy, particularly food prices, is surging.
He explained that apex bank’s intervention programmes in were designed to create jobs, slow down inflation, promote financial inclusion and engender inclusive growth.
He said: “This CBN Fair enables us to create awareness of all the policies and interventions of the bank and to talk to our people on how they can leverage the programmes. We noticed that there seems to be a lethargy in terms of people from the zone embracing the CBN interventions.
“There is also the need for the state governments to leverage the Anchor Borrowers Programme to improve the lives of the people,” he said.
The CBN spokesperson said that the apex bank in its efforts to promote inclusiveness commenced its Commodity Development Initiative with 10 commodities but now the commodities had risen to 22.
According to him, in choosing the commodities it intervened in, the apex bank took into consideration all the possible impacts and those that will help it to create quick wins.
Nwanisobi said that the CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, was passionate about the 37 intervention programmes of the apex bank, advising that the South-East region could do better in accessing the opportunities availed by the programmes.
Earlier in his goodwill message, the Enugu State Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr. Martins Idu, urged the apex bank to domesticate some of its intervention programmes to enable more people to participate.
The commissioner noted that most of the programmes did not have the value chains needed in the state and appealed to the apex bank to include honey production and piggery among the items covered under its Commodity Development Initiative.