CBN restructures NIRSAL, Abdulhameed emerges MD

Godwin-Emefiele-Bella-NaijaThe quest to achieve increased lending in agriculture and its value chains in 2016 may have begun with the announcement of new management appointments in one of the lending vehicles of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)- Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL).

In a statement from the apex bank, following a thorough and competitive process, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, approved the appointment of Aliyu Abbati Abdulhameed as substantive Managing Director.

He also approved the appointment of Babajide Arowosafe as Executive Director (Technical).
Abdulhameed holds a B.Sc. in Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria and a Masters Degree in Public Administration with specialization in Public Policy.

He also holds an Executive Masters Certificate in Project Management from the Project Management College (UK), with over 22 years experience in Corporate Agribusiness and in the field of Agricultural Finance and Risk management.

Abdulhameed is currently an Executive Team Member of NIRSAL.
Arowosafe has a first degree in Agriculture and a Masters in Agricultural Policy and Administration, with wide-ranging experience in agriculture and micro-enterprises, having worked in these fields for both the World Bank and the United Nations.
Recntly, Arowosafe was the Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources in Ekiti State.

NIRSAL is a collective initiative of CBN, the Bankers Committee and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The company essentially administers a risk sharing fund designed to identify, redefine, measure, re-price and evolve strategies to de-risk and catalyze lending to the Nigerian agriculture value chain.

It was subsequently incorporated as a Public Limited Liability Company and licensed as a Non-Bank Financial Institution with the primary mandate of facilitating the flow of credit to agribusiness value chain players and collaborating with stakeholders to fix broken agricultural value chains in Nigeria.

From inception in 2012 to date, 454 projects valued ₦61.161 billion have been guaranteed by NIRSAL, with the sum of ₦753.36 million paid out as interest rebate to borrowers who repaid promptly to encourage good repayment behavior thereby minimizing default.

In addition, by the end of Year 2014, NIRSAL has trained 27,142 farmers across the country.
“These appointments underscore the CBN’s determination to re-focus NIRSAL and help de-risk agricultural lending in Nigeria.
“The Bank is confident that this will help in moving the country towards food sufficiency, job creation, and inclusive growth,” the statement noted.

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