Access Bank’s Focus on Women



HERBERT Wigwe, group managing director, Access Bank Plc, has thrown more light on why his bank has special interest in women. He said the female folks need to be empowered to enable them contribute their quota to national economic development. He said the bank’s interest in women banking had made it to inaugurate the ‘W’ Initiative which is a programme designed to focus on women banking.

“Too often, the role of women on the continent is grossly underrepresented. We must embrace the fact that once the woman is educated, the whole family is educated; and what’s true for the family is true for the community and the whole country,” he said.

According to him, the ‘W’ initiative offers privileges for women and their families, including access to a comprehensive range of loan products and credit facilities and access to the ‘W’ community with helpful advice on family and financial matters. Wigwe added that the bank’s Maternal Health Support Scheme also offers financial assistance to women who face difficulties with their families.

Diamond Bank, MTN Mobile Banking

DIAMOND Bank Plc and MTN Nigeria have announced the introduction of mobile banking services for the banked and the unbanked in the country. According to a statement, the product is a form of financial inclusion programme meant to provide a more convenient financial service for Nigerians through the use of mobile phones.


The product, tagged Diamond Y’ello Account, was inaugurated by the bank and the telecommunications company in Lagos. Paschal Dozie, former managing director of Diamond Bank and chairman, MTN Nigeria, said the mobile banking was essential to the growth of the economy, adding that it would improve the living condition of the people.

“It is said that the bottom line of governance is the welfare of the citizens. What much more does a nation need to improve the welfare of the citizens than access to finance? If you deny somebody access to finance, you have denied him or her means of livelihood,” he said adding that the mobile banking product would also enhance the cashless policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Alex Otti, group managing director, Diamond Bank, noted that the product was timely and that with less than 40 million bank accounts, a lot of people are still excluded one way or the other from access to finance. “There is no way a country can develop when you have a large part of its population still not having access to banking services in one way or the other. In Diamond Bank, we’ve been doing everything possible to ensure that we take banking closer to people who ordinarily do not have access; this is the result of one of the efforts we’ve been making,” Otti said.

Michael Ikpoki, managing director, MTN, described the product as a digital innovation and said the development would enhance the living standard of its customers and the general public. He added that the mobile bank account was developed to bring services and opportunities closer to the unbanked so that they can be part of the larger formal ecosystem through the digital technology.

Sterling Bank Out to Support Education

Yemi Adeola, Sterling Bank MD
Yemi Adeola, Sterling Bank MD

STERLING Bank Plc has restated its will to continue to support the development of education in the country. For this reason, it has pledged to play a dominant role in the development of the education sector ahead of the inauguration of one of its education programmes at the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos.

According to the bank, over 80,000 students and 25 educational institutions are expected at the forum where they would receive information on how the bank could be of support to their various educational needs. Ayo Ashaolu, head of communications, Sterling Bank, said this would provide the right platform for the bank to directly engage students considered as a valuable and influential segment of the market.

He explained that the involvement of the bank in education was as a result of the need for the private sector to support the government in ensuring that children of school age get quality education without having to pay so much for it. He also suggested that the government must increase funding to the education sector and ensure that public schools get better equipped to compete fairly with their private sector counterparts.

Compiled by Chinwe Okafor

— Aug. 25, 2014 @ 01:00 GMT


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