President Muhammadu Buhari stated that the Anchor Borrowers Programme established by the Central Bank of Nigeria had made more than N300 billion available to over 3.1 million smallholder farmers.
The President gave the praise yesterday in Abuja while speaking virtually at the opening ceremony of the 14th Annual Banking and Finance Conference of Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria.
What the President said
President Buhari said that the National Social Investment Programme was the biggest in Sub-Sahara Africa and one of the largest in the world.
According to him, “Some of the various initiatives embarked upon to boost agric trade in Nigeria include the Anchor Borrowers Programme through which the Central Bank of Nigeria had made more than 300 billion Naira available to over 3.1 million smallholder farmers of 21 different commodities including Rice, Wheat, Maize, Cotton, Cassava, Poultry, Soybeans, Groundnut, Fish, cultivating over 3.8 million hectares of farmland.
“I salute the Institute and the entire banking and finance industry for the commitment towards charting a practical path for economic recovery and transformation of our country, Nigeria, and by extension Africa as epitomized by the theme of your conference.”
He stated that efforts to eliminate poverty in the country are continuing to bear fruit with 1.6 million poor and vulnerable households benefiting from the Conditional Cash Transfer program, which includes more than 8 million people, and farmers receiving N300 billion.
The President stated that the National Social Register of poor and vulnerable Nigerians had identified 32.6 million people from 7 million poor and vulnerable households, pleading with bankers to play a more active role in improving livelihoods.
“From this number, 1.6 million poor and vulnerable households, comprising more than 8 million individuals are currently benefiting from the Conditional Cash Transfer program, which pays a bi-monthly stipend of N10, 000 per household,’’ he said.