The Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) has again reiterated its commitment towards taking the lead in Nigeria’s sustainable development initiative drive. Therefore, in aligning with the bank’s advocacy initiative to deepen the financial services institution to further bridge Nigeria’s financial inclusion status, the DBN recently held a capacity-building programme on environmental and social risk management practice for top executives of Microfinance Banks (MfBs) in Lagos.
“In fulfilling our mandate of increasing access, Development Bank of Nigeria Plc is poised to not only be change drivers but be a strong ally partnering with participating financing institutions to drive sustainable development by ensuring that lending is done with the interest of the environment and social wellbeing of the people,” said Tony Okpanachi, the managing director, Development Bank of Nigeria, represented by Bonaventure Okhaimo, the chief operating officer of the DBN.
According to Okpanachi, the workshop was a follow up on the feedback received at an earlier training organised in 2018 for middle level managers of MfBs by the DBN. He however charged participants to take advantage of the lessons from the workshop to ensure improved compliance as well as best practice in environmental and social risk management principles.
The session highlighted strategies on identification, measurement, and mitigation of environmental and social risks in project financing, from a policy and strategic point of view. It also exposed participants to measures of developing environmental and social risk footprints in areas of resource efficiency, reducing carbon emission and other sustainable banking initiatives.
Participants comprising CEOs and top executives of leading Microfinance banks in Nigeria expressed their gratitude to DBN for granting them the opportunity to be part of this timely initiative that is designed to upscale MFBs in operationalising the requirements of Nigerian Sustainable Banking Principles (NSBP).
They also pledged that they will inculcate in their various organisations the strategies and concepts to influence policies and changes that would not only encourage a renewed level of compliance with NSBP but also promote strong corporate governance and responsible banking practices.
The DBN has so far on-boarded 27 participating financial institutions and disbursed over N100, 000 billion to more than 95,000 Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) in Nigeria since the commencement of its operations in 2017.
SEYI JOHN SALAU