Central Bank’s Governor Godwin Emefiele has appealed to bandits terrorizing the Northwest to drop their arms and embrace the Federal Government’s initiative, Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP).
Emefiele extended the carrot on Tuesday while answering questions at the end of a two-day Monetary Policy Committee meeting in Abuja, saying the scheme will be of help to the bandits.
He said, “I would like to appeal to our brothers, who decide that they want to live in bushes and forests that they should please, begin to retreat, drop their arms and come and embrace Anchor Borrowers’ Programme.
“If they do so, it will help them but if they choose not to do so, they will be confronted by the security as this battle continues.”
According to him, there is interconnectivity between security and economy, noting that, “If you expect an economy to grow, the level of insecurity must be low because if there is a high level of insecurity, then the economy will suffer.”
The Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) was launched by President Muhammadu Buhari in November 2015 with the aim of creating a linkage between anchor companies involved in the processing and Smallholder Farmers (SHFs) of the required key agricultural commodities.
The initiative is to promote economic diversification and discourage over-reliance on crude oil earnings and boost economic growth.
The CBN said the thrust of the ABP is the provision of farm inputs in kind and cash (for farm labour) to smallholder farmers to boost production of these commodities, stabilize inputs supply to agro-processors and address the country’s negative balance of payments on food.