The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has expressed concern over what it described as, “fraudulent messages and videos in social media circles requesting unsuspecting loan seekers and owners of small scale businesses to apply for loans or investment schemes purportedly facilitated by the bank.”
In a statement posted on its website late yesterday, signed by Acting Director, Corporate Communications, CBN, Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, the apex bank emphasized that while it has several development finance intervention programmes from which different categories of businesses are benefitting, “It does not do so through direct interaction with prospective applicants.”
Stressing that it does not also facilitate investment schemes, the apex bank pointed out that there are clearly spelt out procedures for accessing its intervention funds which are disbursed through Participating Financial Institutions (PFIs) such as Deposit Money Banks (DMBs), Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) and Micro-Finance Banks(MFBs). The regulator urged members of the public, especially youths and owners of small scale businesses to disregard videos and text messages, proposing investment schemes or charging them fees on the pretext that the organisations that released such messages are endorsed by it.
“These videos and messages are fraudulent and anyone who enters into correspondence with those behind them does so at his or her own risk. The CBN has neither appointed nor accredited any organization to serve as agent on its behalf for the purpose of investment or applying for intervention loans,” it stated. The apex bank advised prospective applicants to approach any of its branches nearest to them, their DMBs or NIRSAL MFB, for clarification on the procedures for accessing any CBN-related intervention facility.