-by our correspondent
Unarguably, the year 2020 has particularly been very contending for Nigeria as a country. The year has been a very tough one for citizens, businesses and indeed, the security operatives. For a country like Nigeria that has to daily contend with other variables, this could be worrisome.
Aside the problem of kidnapping, banditry, and armed robbery, which the people have been subjected to across the nation, Covid – 19 pandemic added to the dimension and took toll on the people. There was also the issue of ASUU strikes and the threat of Labour unrest. The culmination of these crises led to the #ENDSARS Protests which recently took the country by storm.
However, when a country is faced with myriads of challenges, ranging from insecurity, food scarcity and infrastructural deficit, the role of the media as the fourth estate of the realm for objective presentation of facts and the banking system in providing financial succour for small and medium enterprises, SME cannot be over emphasized.
MD/CEO First Bank Plc, Dr. Adesola Adeduntan
The two institutions have been very central in the quest for solutions and ameliorating the problems. First Bank Nigeria Plc, for instance, has, since the beginning of the pandemic, offered several financial succour to the banking public. The bank has shown uncommon responsiveness and compassion towards customers and communities through various offerings.
Some of the responses include; the e-learning for children in school when the foremost financial institution discovered that the recent lock down was going to negatively affect the school children. In like manner, First Bank, through its financial inclusion initiative, FirstAdvance, has disbursed over N17 billion as loans to individuals, across the country.
First Bank’s presence at a recent security summit in Lagos, organized by the National Association of Online Security Reporters, NAOSRE, is a demonstration of its commitment to the growth of Nigeria’s economy and the security of its customers, personnel, and assets.
First Bank’s financial contributions and innumerable Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR, projects across the country and beyond have earned the bank, with over a century banking experience, many awards and rewards home and abroad.
NAOSRE President, Femi Oyewale
The choice of theme; “2021 Nigerian Security Issues, Funding and Prospects” by the media Association for the Security Discourse couldn’t have been more apt, at a time the country is facing increasing security challenges. The ideas generated from the deliberations would no doubt assist greatly in finding lasting solutions to the security challenges.
Interestingly, within a short period of time, NAOSRE has successfully established a sustainable working relationship with key security players in the corporate world and other security agencies in the country, including but not limited to Nigeria Army, Nigerian Navy, Nigerian Airforce, Nigeria Police Force, Nigerian Civil Defense Corps, Nigerian Customs Service, Federal Road Safety Corps, the Executive/ Legislative Arms of government as well as the traditional institution across the country.
This, perhaps would organically shape policy direction in 2021 for a safer Nigeria.