As part of preparations for the examination, the institute has drawn up a curriculum and examination module for the managing directors. They will however be trained before writing the qualifying and employment examinations.
The Guardian learnt at the weekend that the training for the prospective bank chiefs had already started after which they would write the first test in October 2010.
For the three credit bureau accredited by the CBN, they are striving to cope with banks’ demand to train their employees in the art of evaluating loan requests from customers.
Most of the banks’ workers reportedly engaged in the training are from the loan disbursement and information and communications technology (ICT) units of the banks.
The CBN, which set up the procedures for the training and examination of the microfinance bank chiefs, has made it clear that any person that does not pass the exam would no longer be made the helmsman of such outfits.
The Managing Director of Kakawa Discount House and CIBN President, Mr. Laoye Jayeola, told The Guardian that while waiting for the examination, the institute has kicked off the training of operators of the microfinance banks.
He said they would be equipped with the skills for managing the “grassroots banks.” The training will also enable them know the difference between managing a microfinance bank and a commercial bank.
Jaiyeola also stated that it is possible to get lending rate at a single digit if the borrower has the right rating, as against the present 23 to 28 percentage level.
According to him, risk free individuals or corporate organisations could possibly access lending rate at single digit.
The microfinance policy was introduced in exercise of the powers conferred on the CBN by Section 28, sub-section (1b) of the CBN Act 24 of 1991 (as amended) and in pursuance of Section 56 to 60(8) of the Bank and Other Financial Institutions Act (BOFIA) 25 of 1991 as amended.
The policy recognised existing informal institutions and brought them within the supervision of the apex bank, creating a platform for the regulation and supervision of microfinance banks through specially crafted regulatory guidelines.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of CRC Credit Bureau, one of the licensed credit bureaus, Tunde Popoola, in an interview told The Guardian that the banks decided on the two categories of employees because of their key roles in assessing loan applications.
He said the ICT personnel were involved in the training due to the fact that the entire operations are IT-related and therefore ICT workers must know how to use the system and process the necessary information.
Popoola said workers in the loan evaluation units would be taught how to use the information available to assess the loan status of applicants, especially with other financial institutions.
He disclosed that some banks send in their personnel in these relevant units from their head offices while others send in officers from the regional offices or both, depending on their structures as regards loan approvals.
To effect the directive by the CBN to engage the services of at least two credit bureaux before granting loans, banks started writing to their customers seeking their consent to disclose information on their (customers) banking relationship to any of the credit bureaux.
The CBN had made it compulsory for banks and other financial institutions to partner with licensed credit bureaux to enhance the performance of their operations.
The apex bank’s Director, Banking Supervision, Samuel Oni, had in a circular said: “Following the release of the guidelines on licensing, operations and regulations of credit bureau, issued by CBN in October 2008, it has become imperative to issue this document directing banks and other financial institutions to partner with the licensed credit bureau in order to enhance the performance of their operations.
“Consequently, it is mandatory for banks and other financial institutions under the purview of the CBN to comply with Section 5.4.3 and 5.4.5 of the guidelines on licensing, operations and regulations of the credit bureau in Nigeria.”
The three credit bureaux are, CRC Credit Bureau, Credit Registry and XDS Credit Bureau.
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