Thursday, June 12, 2014 7:20 pm
Abuja – Some delegates to the National Conference on Thursday in Abuja proposed the establishment of special banks for women in the country.
The delegates, who made the suggestion while deliberating on the report of the Committee on Economy, Trade and Investment of the conference, said the proposed bank would provide women with access to low interest loan.
Hajia Aishatu Isma’iI, representing Kano state said there was need to establish a special bank for women to access low interest loans to finance their businesses.
She said that most women were engaged in various small businesses and since they were not big business owners, they could not compete with industrialists to seek loans from commercial banks.
“I want to suggest that either Peoples’ Bank should be resuscitated or a similar bank should be established to help the women who cannot go to the commercial banks to borrow money.
“This has become imperative because they are major contributors to the Nigerian economy as they provide services in various areas.
“I am an advocate of women’s bank because with that, the bottlenecks will be removed especially the collaterals banks are asking us to pay. Some of us do not have these collaterals.
“With the establishment of women’s bank, I think a lot of progress would be made in that direction,’’ Isma’il said.
In her contribution, Mrs Felicail Sani, representing National Association of Market Women also supported the establishment of special banks for women.
Sani said in spite of their contribution to the country’s economic development, the women had not been given the needed attention.
“In 1989, we were deceived and given the now defunct Peoples’ Bank but now we don’t have that bank. Community Bank was also introduced; where is the bank now? Now it is Micro Finance Bank.
“I am appealing to this conference to recommend to government through an act to establish a special bank for the women.
“I am not working on sympathy that the banks should not charge interest because their members of staff will be paid but they should charge a reasonable interest on loans to business women to encourage them to grow.
“Call it a special bank for market women, for traders or women in agriculture,” Sani said.
She, however, attributed the high cost of products to the challenges facing traders such as high cost of transportation, shop rent and multiple charges by local councils, among others.