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In its continuous drive to remain at the forefront of engendering educational learning amongst young Nigerians, Heritage Bank Plc joined in celebrating the “World Book Day” by means of implementing one of its literacy initiatives and donation of books to schools.

The bank has decided to lend its support to the biggest celebration of its kind, designated by UNESCO as a worldwide celebration of books and reading in its 20th year, and marked in over 100 countries all over the world for children of all ages to come together to appreciate reading.

However, as part of effort to inculcate the culture of reading books amongst children, Heritage Bank donated a total of 16,340 comic books, dispatched to 84 schools via Experience Centers, while investing in exciting edutainment activities for school communities.

The bank recently launched, “The protector’s” a comic series book to commemorate Children’s day. The super-heroes of the series, HK-1 and HK-2 will be touring schools this year to win allies to fight against the evil Gus D Ville.

Also, other activities involve the first inter school quiz commenced in last year December, with 20 winners emerging from various schools.

The Financial Literacy Holiday Workshop, as the highlights of the workshop to mark the maiden edition, which include financial literacy coaching presentation skills, creative writing, practical sessions, movie outing and other exciting treats.

According to the bank, in a statement made available by the Group Head, Corporate Communications, Fela Ibidapo, Heritage Bank has continued to support education and as well encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have books of their own.

Meanwhile, he stressed that it was important schools inculcate reading culture in order to drive financial literacy into the mainstream curriculum or as an extra-curricular club to ensure that we raise a generation of financially well informed citizens for a dynamic economy.

He explained that the goal of the Financial Literacy program is to secure the future and empower the Nigerian child and youth to make informed decisions about finances and wealth creation so they can take action to improve their present and long-term financial well-being.

He listed some of the mitigating reading culture and the current Nigeria’s educational sector as limited use of technology and visual aids in the teaching process and negligence to develop critical parent-teacher synergy that would be well aligned with today’s(and tomorrow’s) goals and offers an extended range of services for both  its students and its community.

Fela, however, stressed that financial education is a key success indicator for socio-economic development, adding that the bank believes in empowering the youth with requisite skills to make solid financial decisions in adult years.

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Kings of Finance: GTBank Named Africa’s Most Admired Finance Brand

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Guaranty Trust Bank plc has been ranked Africa’s Most Admired Finance Brand in the 10th-anniversary rankings of Brand Africa 100: Africa’s Best Brands, the pre-eminent survey and ranking of the Top 100 admired brands in Africa. The rankings were announced in a novel global virtual event and will be published in the June issue of the African Business magazine.

In a special report examining the results of the 2020 survey, the founder of Brand Africa, Thebe Ikalafeng, said GTBank’s “clever marketing, global presence and some of its flagship food and fashion events have undoubtedly helped make it a fixture of daily life in some of its key markets, especially its home base Nigeria.” He added that the bank, which recently won plaudits for building a 110-bed Care Centre in response to the Covid-19 Pandemic, “has taken banking and finance to the people.”

GTBank has long been regarded as one of Africa’s outstanding brands and enjoys a massive youth following thanks to its innovative and forward-thinking approach to financial services and customer engagement. It currently commands the largest social media following amongst all financial institutions in Africa and in 2019, the Bank hosted over 700,000 people at its consumer-focused events, GTBank Food and Drink Festival and The GTBank Fashion Weekend, among them dozens of business leaders and industry experts from around the world.

In 2019, GTBank removed all banking charges for young undergraduates under the age of 25 on its GTCrea8 Account Package. The move was unprecedented in the financial services sector but not unusual for a bank that had pioneered Zero-Naira Account Opening in the country, and in which people over the age of 65 also bank for free. GTBank is also blazing the trail in digital technologies; after leading the USSD banking revolution in Nigeria with its 737 Service, the bank is driving the digitization of consumer lending with Quick Credit, a first-of-its-kind digital lending product that gives individuals and small businesses instant, real-time access to loans anytime, anywhere via their mobile phones.

Brand Africa’s ranking of GTBank as Africa’s Most Admired Finance Brand is only one of its many accolades. In 2019, the was recognized as the Best Bank in Africa and Best Bank in Nigeria, by the Euromoney Magazine and the Best Banking Group and Best Retail Bank Nigeria by World Finance Magazine. In the same year, the Bank also dominated the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Electronic Payment Incentive Scheme (EPIS) Efficiency Awards for the third year in a row, taking home 8 of the 12 honours for banks at the forefront of driving the digitalization of financial services.

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COVID-19: CBN Issues Directive To Banks, Reduces Interest Rates

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has reduced interest rates on its facilities through participating in Other Financial Institutions (OFIs).

The rate has been slashed from 9 to 5 percent per for one year, effective March 1, 2020.

This was contained in a circular to banks on Wednesday by the Director of Financial Policy and Regulation Department, Kevin Amugo.

Similarly, CBN intervention facilities obtained through participating OFIs, Microfinance Banks (MFBs), Primary Mortgage Banks, among others would be given a further one-year moratorium on all principal repayments.

This is also effective on March 1, 2020.

OFIs have equally been granted leave to consider temporary and time-limited restructuring of the tenor and loan terms for households and businesses, subject to the recently issued guidelines for restructuring affected credit facilities in the OFI sub-sector.

The Director, Corporate Communications Department, Isaac Okoroafor, said the decisions were part of the bank’s efforts to cushion the effects of coronavirus on Nigerians, businesses and regulated institutions.

He assured that the CBN would also continue to monitor developments and implement appropriate measures to safeguard financial stability and support stakeholders impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting of the CBN for the month of May will be held on Thursday.

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GTBank Celebrates Children’s Day

Gbemileke Ajayi

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