By Tony Obiechina, Abuja
NIRSAL Micro Finance Bank (NMFB) has refuted claims that it denied loans to 100,000 applicants under the Agribusiness Small & Medium Enterprises Scheme of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The Management of the Bank said in a statement on Thursday that the accusation “is not only spurious but unfounded as NMFB frowns at any form of unethical practices or unprofessional conduct which contravenes our policy and core values”.
The statement reads: “The attention of the Management of NIRSAL Microfinance Bank has been drawn to some claims by certain individuals that applied for loans under the Agribusiness Small & Medium Enterprises Scheme of the Central Bank of Nigeria that the Bank conspired with some EDIs to extort money from applicants with the promise to grant them approvals for their loan requests.
“This accusation is not only spurious but unfounded as NMFB frowns at any form of unethical practices or unprofessional conduct which contravenes our policy and core values.
“NMFB has repeatedly warned applicants, through various social media platforms, that the AGSMEIS loan application process is individual-based, after the completion of a N10,000-cost training exercise by NMFB-accredited Entrepreneurial Development Institutions, EDIs.
“The business plan, which is also automatically generated on the portal, has two options – a free application and another that cost N5,000. Applicants have the liberty to use any of the two business plan options. No EDI has the right to charge extra cost.
“We implore applicants to report any observed anomalies or form of solicitation via [email protected] or call 07041800003 or 094621730 or contact the nearest NIRSAL Microfinance Bank.
“We wish to use this medium to inform the applicants who were recently sent a decline application message due to their inability to meet our set current risk assessment criteria that they can re-apply with a business plan tailored to the new maximum of N3million threshold at no cost to them.
“Once again, we remind all Nigerians that the AGSMEIS loan is not a GRANT but a LOAN”.