By Taye Obateru
A microfinance bank in Plateau State has given loans to over 61 cooperatives and 460 individuals as part of its efforts to empower rural dwellers economically.
Chairman, Board of Directors, First Lowland Microfinance Bank, Air Marshall Jonah Wuyep (rtd), disclosed this at its first year anniversary.
Wuyep also disclosed plans to open more branches to enable more rural dwellers benefit from the bankâ€™s operations.
He said the bank had 3,000 saving account holders within its first year of operation and now had a capital base of over N50m, up from the N38m it commenced operations with.
Wuyep lamented that the e-payment introduced by the Universal Basic Education Board in the state for its staff was adversely affecting the bankâ€™s operation. He urged the state government to look into the lack of a good access road and other infrastructural problems facing the area.
MD of the bank, Mr. Amos Balami, assured customers of better services as it consoli-dates on its achievement within one year in the years ahead.
He had earlier at a briefing disclosed plans to work with other development partners to expand the services of the bank in its area of operation adding, â€œwe are not just out to make profit but we also want to assist the people.â€
He said the bank wants to build up entrepreneurs in Langtang South where it is based and the neighbouring LGAs of Wase, Shendam, Langtang North, Mikang and Quan- Pan.
Balami said the bank has been able to promote saving culture among the people in the area noting that the response rate was an indication that they had yearned for such a service.
He assured the people of the safety of their savings as the bank is already insured by the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) apart from maintaining a high level of professionalism that would not endanger depositorâ€™s funds.