The Federal Government, through the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, has announced the launch of the Mobile Money Agent Programme and the commencement of training for 1,850 beneficiaries in Nigeria.
The scheme was inaugurated by the Humanitarian Minister, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq, on Thursday in Abuja, during the inauguration and training of beneficiaries in the North Central Zone.
The Minister stated that the scheme was introduced to sustain the social inclusion agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration, in relation to the National Social Investment Programme (NSIP) which was expanded to include mobile money agents, as 350 beneficiaries from the North-Central zone commenced a five-day training programme.
What the Minister said
“The programme is designed to provide toolkits to unemployed youths and develop their competencies to operate as registered mobile money agents,” she said.
“The training we are starting today will enable target beneficiaries to meet the minimum technical and business requirements for becoming mobile money agents and enhance their entrepreneurial competencies, to successfully start and manage mobile money businesses.
“Upon completion of the training, the target beneficiaries will be registered with the Shared Agency Network Expansion Facility (SANEF) as mobile money agents and be provided with start-up kits that include a Point-of-Sale (POS) Machine, Fingerprint Scanner and Furniture (chairs, tables and umbrellas) as well as a modest capital of N20,000.00,” she added.
She stated that the FG hoped that the programme would provide job opportunities to the 1,850 youths selected from the 36 States and the FCT, as well as promote financial inclusion by providing financial services to unserved and underserved Nigerians.
“It will also enhance the integration of NSIP by enabling target beneficiaries to join the network of agents providing financial-related services under other components of NSIP, such as the conditional cash transfer and the grant for vulnerable groups, as well as in the enumeration/enrolment of target beneficiaries,” Farouq said.
She added that the training programme would also commence soon in Akure and Calabar, in addition to commencing next week in Kano, Bauchi and Nsukka in Enugu state, and that the introduction of the Shared Agent Network Expansion Facility (SANEF) continued the success of the event, and commended its partnership with the ministry in the implementation of the mobile money agents’ programme.
“This will enable the registration and onboarding of target beneficiaries upon completion of the training. We also deeply appreciate the support of other stakeholders and their contributions.”
The Chief Executive Officer of SANEF, Ronke Kuye, explained that the facility was set up in 2019 to deepen financial activities in the six geopolitical zones of the country, adding that there were 900,000 across the 774 local governments across the country, which was made possible by partners like Central Bank of Nigeria, state governments and others.
“This programme would be a source of empowerment, income and livelihood. It would help enhance financial inclusion in the economy,” Kuye said.
What you should know
Recall Nairametrics reported in January that the Federal Government had announced that former beneficiaries of the N-Power scheme could access job opportunities created for members of the scheme, starting with an agent network in partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The beneficiaries that would be eligible were Batches A and B of the N-Power scheme. The N-Power job plan would see 200,000 beneficiaries employed as operators of the Shared Agent Network Expansion Facility (SANEF) scheme operated by CBN.
The Shared Agent Network Expansion Facility (SANEF) is a programme that aims to boost financial inclusion in Nigeria, operated by the Central Bank of Nigeria, Deposit Money Banks, Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement Systems, Chattered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, Licensed Mobile Money Operators, and Shared Agents.