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World Bank Releases N600m Grant to Kwara Community

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World Bank
  • World Bank Releases N600m Grant to Kwara Community

The Acting General Manager, Kwara State Community and Social Development Agency, Alhaji Yahaya Ahmed, says the agency has accessed over N600m from the World Bank for community and social development projects.

He added that the grant was facilitated through the mandatory payment of N50m by the state government in 2015.

Ahmed said if another N50m approved by Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara State in December was cash-backed, the agency could access about N800m from the World Bank for projects.

He spoke with journalists in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, on Thursday on the sidelines of the presentation of cheques to 16 communities in the state.

The benefiting communities, according to him, are Igbo-Owu, Ahun, Owode-Ofaro, Ijomu-Oro, Idi-Ose, Gulufu, Gedeworo, Ifedawapo, Oke-Agbede, Oloro-Oja, Eleko, Elega, and Aladere Magaji.

He listed other benefitting communities to include: Lata-Nna, Oluode-Aluwo and Oke-Atan.

He stated that the benefiting communities were in Ifelodun, Irepodun, Moro, Edu, Ilorin West, Asa, Patigi, Offa and Oyun Local Government Areas.

Ahmed stated that the first tranche of the cheques worth N34m were disbursed to the benefiting 16 communities during the occasion, adding that a total grant of N83m would be disbursed.

According to him, the remaining communities will also be presented with their cheques from January.

He said the agency was presently in 104 communities of the state from 2016.

Ahmed said, “The state upgraded the poverty map of the state, which has been approved by the governor. From the ranking of LGs, it was also approved that we should commence our activities from eight LGs. We have three in Kwara North (Edu, Moro and Kaiama); two in Kwara Central (Ilorin West and Asa LGs) and three in Kwara South (Offa, Oke-iro and Isin LGA). Those are the poorest LGs in terms of infrastructural development.

“The CSDP commenced operations in Nigeria in 2009, with 26 states including Kwara State and the Federal Capital Territory participating in the scheme. The first phase of this project however closed in 2013. Following the significant impact of this scheme in all the participating states in Nigeria many more states have joined the race such as Sokoto, Borno, Kaduna and Ogun while Anambra is still struggling to join the project.

“The KWCSDA has intervened in 104 communities across the 16 LGAs of the state with 176 micro projects out of which 99 has been completed while 78 are still ongoing in the sectors of education, water, health, rural electricity, environment and socio-economic. Fifteen community developments plans have been fully completed.”

The Kwara State governor, who was represented by the Commissioner for Planning and Economic Development, Alhaji Wasiu Odewale, said the payment of mandatory N50m and approval for the release of another N50m by the state government even during the current economic challenges exemplified the governor’s commitment and contribution for rural communities to benefit from the project.

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Businessinsider, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Finance

Federal Government Clears $120m Debt to Gas Companies Amid Nigeria’s Power Crisis

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Gas-Pipeline

Amidst Nigeria’s persistent power crisis, the Federal Government has taken a pivotal step forward by clearing a significant portion of its debt to gas companies.

A sum of $120 million has been paid out of the country’s $1.3 billion indebtedness to gas suppliers, offering a glimmer of hope for improved energy stability across the nation.

The Minister of Power, Chief Adebayo Adelabu, underscored the critical role of gas in power generation and highlighted how the mounting debts had severely hampered gas supply to electricity-generating companies, exacerbating the country’s electricity shortfall.

Nigeria heavily relies on thermal power plants fueled by gas for over 70% of its electricity needs, making the timely settlement of gas debts paramount for enhancing power generation capacity and addressing the nation’s energy deficit.

Addressing delegates at the 7th Nigeria International Energy Summit in Abuja, the Director of the Decade of Gas Secretariat, Ed Ubong, expressed optimism about the government’s progress in offsetting its financial obligations to gas producers.

He emphasized the importance of aligning gas and power sectors to foster sustainable energy solutions.

As Nigeria grapples with the multifaceted challenges plaguing its energy landscape, the government’s commitment to settling outstanding gas debts marks a pivotal stride towards revitalizing the country’s power infrastructure and ensuring reliable electricity access for its citizens.

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Finance

Nigeria Insurance Corporation Reimburses Depositors of 179 Closed Microfinance and Four Mortgage Banks

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Retail banking

The Nigeria Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has announced the successful reimbursement of depositors affected by the closure of 179 microfinance banks and four mortgage banks across the country.

The reassuring news came during the 45th Kaduna International Trade Fair, where NDIC’s Managing Director, Dr. Bello Hassan, explained the corporation’s unwavering commitment to safeguarding depositors’ funds amidst financial uncertainties.

Dr. Hassan, represented by Hauwa Gambo, the NDIC’s Deputy Director of Communication, highlighted the corporation’s proactive measures in protecting the interests of depositors.

The introduction of the Single Customer View framework has expedited the process of reimbursing depositors of liquidated banks, ensuring swift and transparent transactions.

The corporation’s collaboration with the judiciary has yielded positive results, facilitating the speedy prosecution of failed insured banks and resolving long-standing cases of bank liquidations like Fortune and Triumph Banks.

This concerted effort has significantly enhanced the debt recovery rate, enabling NDIC to declare full liquidation dividends to uninsured depositors of over 20 deposit money banks.

Furthermore, NDIC has embraced digital remote payment strategies, streamlining electronic funds transfers to verified depositors’ alternate bank accounts.

The introduction of the ‘Deposit Tracer’ initiative in partnership with mobile operators aims to address apathy among depositors with small balances, providing accessible avenues for claiming funds trapped in closed banks.

The initiatives underscore NDIC’s proactive stance in safeguarding depositors’ interests and ensuring financial stability in Nigeria’s banking sector.

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Banking Sector

85.51 Million Nigerian Bank Customers Face Withdrawal Freeze Over NIN, BVN Deadline

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First Bank

As the March 1 deadline looms, an estimated 85.51 million Nigerian bank customers are facing the possibility of frozen accounts due to their failure to link their National Identification Numbers (NINs) and/or Bank Verification Numbers (BVNs) to their accounts.

Recent findings reveal the potential scale of the impending banking crisis.

Data from the Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System (NIBSS) indicates that Nigeria had approximately 146 million active individual bank customers as of December 2022.

However, by January 26, 2024, only 60.49 million BVNs were recorded on the NIBSS portal, leaving a significant portion unlinked.

Meanwhile, about 104 million NINs had been issued by December 2023, highlighting the disparity between NIN issuance and BVN linkage.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had earlier issued directives to banks, mandating them to restrict transactions on accounts lacking linked NINs and BVNs, with effect from March 1, 2024.

Any accounts found non-compliant risk being designated as ‘Post no Debit,’ rendering them unable to process further transactions.

Responding to the impending crisis, the Director-General of the National Identification Management Commission (NIMC), Abisoye Coker-Odusote, emphasized the need for the revalidation of Front-End Partners (FEPs) to ensure the integrity of the identity database.

She underscored the importance of NIN registration and urged collaboration with various stakeholders to expedite the process.

The Executive Vice Chairman/CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Dr. Aminu Maida, reiterated the significance of linking NINs to SIM cards to enhance national security.

Telecom subscribers were urged to comply with the NIN-SIM linkage directive to avoid service disruptions.

Meanwhile, financial service providers like Opay have issued reminders of the impending restrictions, urging customers to comply with the linkage requirements.

Amidst concerns, some customers contemplate transferring funds to compliant accounts to avoid potential financial setbacks.

As the deadline approaches, stakeholders are intensifying efforts to mitigate the impact of the impending banking crisis on millions of Nigerians.

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