The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has cautioned Nigerians against seeking credit facilities from loan sharks for financial purposes.
CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, gave the warning while addressing reporters at the end of the Monetary Policy Committee meeting held on Tuesday in Abuja.
“On loan sharks, what we have done is to say that there is no need for you to go to loan sharks for a loan,” he said. “People normally will go to loan sharks because they are desperate, they cannot access the bank.
“We found in this group, mainly people who are vulnerable; the people whose households need some small amount of money to do their businesses but they cannot access bank finance and as a result go to loan sharks who charge them … twice the principal just within 90 days and if you don’t, they seize your property or seize your bicycle.”
According to Emefiele, there is no need for people to go for loan sharks because the CBN has put in place the avenue through which they can raise funds.
He listed them to include the microfinance banks and target credit facilities established by the government to cater to the needs of the operators of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMSEs).
“You don’t have to know anybody, just go to the portal, fill the form, send your data, and if it is correct, you will be able to access loans,” the apex bank’s governor explained.
He added, “We have a large number of testimonials from people who have accessed the facility without knowing anybody and they have benefitted from it.
“The bank is making effort to stop loan sharks, and when these people are found, they will be dealt with mercilessly.”