By Gbenga Ariyibi
ADO-EKITI— THE Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, has said the introduction of Islamic banking into our financial system was “necessitated by the effect of global meltdown that castrated the Nigerian financial system and slowed down the growth of the economy.”
He, however, assured that Nigeria’s subscription to Islamic banking would revive the current downturn of the country’s economy.
Sanusi pledged to dialogue with the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, this week on the issue.
The CBN governor, who was delivering a paper entitled: “Youth empowerment as a tool for sustainable development at the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, Permanent Orientation Camp, Ise Ekiti, weekend, for the Batch B corps members, regretted that a lot of Nigerians might have been misinformed of the motive/importance of Nigeria’s subscription to the non interest banking, adding that the move has no religious coloration.
In the speech delivered on his behalf by the Controller of the CBN, Ekiti State Branch, Mr Samuel Oladele Ogungbayi, the CBN governor said Islamic banking was just a product out of many that commercial banks operate.
His words: “The non-interest banking framework was necessitated by the effect of global meltdown that castrated the Nigeria financial system and slowed down the growth of the economy.
“Given the increasing number of requests from persons, banks and other financial institutions, the CBN has developed the guidelines for the regulation and supervision of institutions that intend to offer Islamic financial services
“Islamic banking is one of the models of non-interest banking that provides financial services similar to conventional financial institutions save that it operates in accordance with the principles and rules of profit and loss sharing and the prohibition of interest charges.
Sanusi further said some of the advanced countries like Britain and America operate Islamic banking, adding that other countries like Malaysia and Indonesia have already experienced rapid growth in Islamic banking by tapping from this huge fast growing industry.
To meet with CAN leadership
Sanusi assured that he was ready to meet with Christian leaders to educate them on Nigeria’s interest in investing in Islamic banking.
The apex bank boss, however, reeled out some of the bank’s interventions in empowering the youths and the average businessman in the country, some of which according to him, include Trust Fund Model, TFM; Interest Drawback Programme, IDP; Micro Policy Framework for Nigeria and Small and Medium enterprises Finance.
He charged corps members to be more pro-active and explore any of the opportunities offered by the CBN, saying they should not rely on salaried work.