Over 4m rural dwellers benefit from RUFIN
Global, Africa, África Occidental, Nigeria
Over four million rural dwellers have benefitted from the Rural Finance Institution Building Programme (RUFIN), the Deputy National Coordinator of the programme, Mrs Unekwu Ufaruna, has said. Ufaruna, who made this known in an interview with newsmen in Makurdi on Thursday, said the programme had also made tremendous impact on micro-finance service providers. “About four million people have benefitted directly from RUFIN progrmmme. “Apart from the 18,000 benefiting groups (15 to 20 persons per group) across the country, the programme had also organised capacity building workshops for micro-finance institutions, Bank of Agriculture (BoA) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). “The capacity building programmes are designed to improve financial services for the rural poor and aid financial institutions to be self-reliant and not to depend on government for funds. “Even the customers of the banks have indirectly benefited from RUFIN as they now enjoy better financial services with modern techniques,” she said. Ufaruna, however, appealed to the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development to liaise with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) to give more loans so that new women and youth groups would be properly mentored. She said RUFIN was only being implemented in three local government areas of 12 states across the country, saying that the programme was yet to reach many rural poor.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that RUFIN is a programmed sponsored by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) in collaboration with the Federal Government. The seven-year programme was introduced in 2010 to reduce poverty in rural areas by enhancing access to financial services for rural poor households. The programme gives special attention to women, the physically challenged and rural youths through group formation methodology.
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