March 29, 2021
BY Ibrahim Kabba Turay
Nigerian Financial Service Association (FSA),together with Sierra Leone FSA, last (Friday 26th March, 2021) at Marlie Village Tonkolili District embarked on a study tour that would enable them to learn from each other.
Mohamed Tejan Kella,Programme Coordinator for the national coordination Unit in the Ministry of Agriculture Forestry and Food Security, said they have established community banks across the country.
He explained that they have fourteen commercial banks and ten of those are owned by Nigerians, thus noting that he has been in the agriculture sector for over thirty-five years and has one of the largest farms in the country.
He said the visit of their Nigerian counterpart was good for the country as Nigeria is the elder brother to Sierra Leone in terms economic development as they would learn a lot from each other.
He added that government was planning to disburse ten million dollars for Agriculture so citizens can access loans for farming.
He said the literate people should not leave agriculture in the hands of rural farmers, noting that they should be the pacesetters.
He commended the Nigerians for coming to Sierra Leone for the said assessment in respect of the project, thus emphasising that if you are doing something good people would always want to copy.
He said the purpose of the Nigerian visit to Sierra Leone was to see how they can emulate the activities of 59 FSAs in Sierra Leone and implement it in Nigeria.
He said they have tour all their centres in the country to have a compressive understanding on the FSA in Sierra Leone.
He added that the tour was to advice FSA in Sierra Leone on how they can manage their business to be sustainable.
Buba B. Godobe Deputy Director Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in Nigeria said the reasons for their visit to Sierra Leone were to record the success stories FSA in Sierra Leone.
“Sierra Leone is a big agricultural country that has vast land and the potential to feed itself and even West Africa” he said
He said there are many things they have seen in Sierra Leone that they haven’t been doing in Nigeria which they will like to implement, including the structuring of the FSA in Sierra Leone and Loans disbursement.
He further said that the FSA in Sierra Leoine is at advanced stage as compare to Nigeria which is still crippling FSA in Nigeria, adding that they don’t have buildings as many building as Sierra Leone.
He said culture is another problem as Muslim people do not allow their women noting that they do ask them to pay service charge as interest for the loan.
He further said that they have 284 FSA in Nigeria, but about 138 that they are operating structurally.
He concluded that they were very impressed with what they saw in Sierra Leone as its FSA has attend a level of self-sufficiency which he said is very good move.