Mr. Hassan Usman, the Managing Director/Chief Executive of Jaiz Bank Plc said to show the bank’s commitment to facilitating financial inclusion, those who don’t have access to financial services would be allowed to open accounts without meeting the strict Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements including utility bills, international passports, among others.
Usman said “these accounts are opened as financial inclusion accounts and then graduate into the next level but what we are trying to do is to use channels such as agency banking, our own branches and other digital avenues to allow as many people to come on board and also empower them with little credit”.
The pilot phase of the project will be implemented in Katsina, but if successful will be rolled out across the country. Usmam said that “we are aggressive in this area of financial inclusion. Our experience with the pilot so far is exciting because people like to be supported. The only challenge is in convincing beneficiaries that the money is not free, that it will have to be repaid. Everyone would like to be supported financially”.
Usman, who spoke at the National Financial Literacy Stakeholders’ Conference in Abuja, said Jaiz Bank was an initiative implemented by the Nigerian government to encourage financial inclusion and provide non-interest banking for those who prefer it. He said the bank would ensure that there is deep penetration of financial services to ordinary citizens.
The Chief Executive said the bank has been part of the process of ensuring financial inclusion through agency banking and use of technology to reach the unbanked.