The Central Bank of Nigeria, Abeokuta branch, has said that 1779 farmers in Ogun State have benefitted from agricultural loans in 2021.
Head, the CBN, Abeokuta Branch Controller, Wahab Oseni, disclosed this on Wednesday at the Ogun State Award for Best Farmer of the Year, 2021.
Oseni said the disbursement was part of the Agricultural Credit Guarantee Scheme Fund (ACGSF) established by Decree No. 20 of 1977 to guarantee credit facilities extended to farmers by banks.
He said the loan was targeted at increasing access to funds in the agricultural sector, adding that beneficiaries would get back 50 per cent of the interest if they met with terms of the loan.
He said, “The purpose of the fund is to provide guarantee in respect to loans granted by lending banks up to the tune of 75 per cent net of amount realised on collateral in case of default for agricultural purposes.
“This is aimed at increasing the level of bank credit to the agricultural sector. The scheme, through the interest drawback programme, also rewards beneficiaries by giving back 50 per cent of interest paid on loan if fully repaid within the stipulated period.
“The role of farmers in enhancing food security and zero hunger is very pivotal in every nation and for this, we say a very big thank you to our farmers
“In 2021, the Development Finance Office, Central Bank of Nigeria Abeokuta guaranteed 1779 loans valued at Seven Hundred and Twenty-Three Million, One Hundred and One Thousand (N723,111,000.00) from three (3) banks, comprising of two micro finance banks and one deposit money bank.
“I wish to state that the winners of today’s award went through a selection committee using some criteria which included adoption of best agricultural practices, record keeping, utilization and timely repayment of loan among others.”
He announced Saka Dolapo as the best farmer of the year 2021 in Ogun State while Onasanya Babatunde and Abosede Olowonisoro emerged first and second runners up respectively.
In her address, the Ogun CBN Development Finance Officer, Dr. Oluwakemi Olukoya, while congratulating the awardees, said food security was everybody’s responsibility.