By Adedapo Adesanya
The Lagos State Government through the Ministry of Home Affairs has automated the process money lending service providers can apply and get licenses to operate in the state.
This was revealed by the Commissioner for Home Affairs, Mr Anofiu Elegushi, at a Ministerial Press Briefing commemorating the first year in office of the state governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, which was held at JJT Park, Alausa, Ikeja.
The Commissioner revealed that since the commencement of the process few months ago, it has received 207 applications from money lenders, out of which approvals were granted for 184 applicants.
He explained that the decision to automate the process of money lending licences in the state was to ensure a hitch-free renewal and fresh applications by prospective applicants.
Mr Elegushi reported that only one application has so far been declined by the Ministry while 22 applications are currently being reviewed, stressing that the initiative would henceforth guarantee easy access to loan opportunities to residents of the state. He also added that this will provide employment for the youths.
According to him, “the initiative is cost-effective for grass root financing and the requirements are simple and straightforward. The forms are available and the processes are very friendly.
“In addition, the automation of the money lending processes would help address several issues of trust that had overtime bedevilled the practitioners.”
Mr Elegushi described the various money lenders across the state as the mini-micro economic stimulants that creates jobs, generate wealth, alleviate poverty and widens the tax net, thereby increasing the socio-economic status of the state through the provision of enabling environment for small scale businesses and entrepreneurship.
He recalled that prior to the automation of the money lending processes; the Ministry had earlier held a stakeholders’ forum on the need to examine the laws guiding the activities of money lenders in the state in order to make members of the public repose more confidence in the practitioners.
He also reiterated the support of the administration of Governor Sanwo-Olu in creating an enabling environment for easy loan accessibility to the citizens with an emphasis on pragmatic strategies for achieving positive and cost-effective results in grass root financing which will help in achieving the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda in which making Lagos State a 21st century economy can become a reality.
The T.H.E.M.E.S code stands for Traffic Management and Transportation; Health and Environment; Education and Technology; Making Lagos a 21st Century state; Security and Governance.
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