The Deputy Governor (Financial System Stability), Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN), Dr. Kingsley Moghalu last week restated the central bank’s commitment to meeting the target of attaining 80 per cent financial inclusion among the country’s adult population by 2020.
Moghalu made the remark at a consumer sensitisation forum held in Sokoto.
According to him, the target was in line with the Maya declaration to reduce the financial exclusion rate in Nigeria from 46.3 per cent in 2010 to 20 percent per cent by 2020.
He disclosed that a significant component of economic transactions in Nigeria were not captured in the formal financial system, adding that it was in view of this, that various intervention measures were put in place by the CBN to facilitate accessibility of financial services.
Moghalu who spoke through the Director Consumer Protection Department of the CBN, Hajiya Umma Aminu Dutse noted that access to finance alone could not bring about financial inclusion. He stressed the need for trust and confidence to be engendered among Nigerians to make them effectively use the financial services offered by banks.
“The CBN deems it necessary to increase awareness and understanding of financial products and services, not only to enhance their efficient usage but also to empower Nigerians with the necessary knowledge and skills to make informed decisions.
“A financial literacy framework that delivers financial education programs across different target groups was developed to inculcate financial knowledge and discipline while institutionalising responsible business conduct in the financial services industry,” he said.
Moghalu stated that the forum was meant to sensitise consumers of financial products and also to reassure them that it was safe to participate in the formal financial system.
He described Sokoto state as a centre of learning that occupies important position in economic growth and development in the country in terms of commerce, transportation and agriculture.
The CBN deputy governor argued that the fact that most financial transactions in the state were being carried out outside the formal financial system have negative consequences on the economic development of not only Sokoto but Nigeria as a nation. This, he insisted, deprives a large percentage of the population of the state opportunities the formal financial system presents.
In his remark, the Sokoto Branch Controller of the CBN, Mohammed Idris, said the purpose of the forum was to create financial literacy awareness and build confidence among consumers of financial products and services.