From Ndubuisi Orji and Kemi Yesufu, Abuja
The House of Representatives has concluded plans to probe the activities of government-owned Development Finance Institutions (DFIs). These include the Bank of Industry( BoI), the Bank of Agriculture(BoA), the Nigerian Export-Import Bank( NEXIM) and the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC).
Others are the Small and Medium Scale Enterprises Development Agency(SMEDAN), the National Economic Reconstruction Fund, (NERFUND), and the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria(FMBN).
To this end, an ad-hoc committee on the investigation of the activities of state-owned Development Finance Institutions was inaugurated at the weekend to undertake the assignment. The committee led by Mr Chukwuemeka Anuho , will be investigating factors that has hampered the efficient running of the DFIs, thereby making them unable to contribute effectively to national development.
Inaugurating the committee, the Deputy Speaker, Yussuff Lasun, urged it to unravel the bottlenecks that has hindered the DFIs from performing optimally.
According to him, “Development Finance Institutions are established to serve as catalyst for development of small and medium enterprises and Agro-based businesses.
“These institutions if adequately harnessed, are enough to propel this country into technological and economic advancement. Unfortunately, despite the huge resources committed into these institutions, their impact are yet to be felt by the majority of the masses.”
Speaking earlier, Anohu decried the inability of the DFIs to live up to expectations since they were established.
“These institutions were charged with the primary mandate of providing long-term financing to the industrial and productive sectors of the economy and were designed to finance the establishment of large, medium and small industries as well as facilitate the expansion, diversification and modernisation of the existing concerns.”