The federal government has unveiled plans to equip at least 12,000 young civil servants in the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning with financial literacy skills before the end of this year.
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed revealed this on Tuesday in Abuja during the official launching ceremony of the service-wide financial education program in the workplace.
The program which is part of the government’s financial inclusion initiative will be implemented in partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria and other relevant stakeholders.
Represented at the event by the ministry’s permanent secretary, Mallam Aliyu Ahmed, the minister said the pilot stage will have 12,000 ministry staff who will benefit from the training.
She added that plans are underway to expand the opportunity to all federal government ministries, departments and agencies.
Ahmed said the strong correlation between a nation’s level of financial literacy and the nation’s economic and financial development cannot be overstated.
She described financial literacy as an engagement tool that would not only empower an individual, but also place such an individual to the advantage of their contemporaries.
The Minister further explained that obtaining financial literacy would build an inclusive financial economy, reduce the level of financial exclusion and solve the country’s many financial problems.
She said, “The Ministry intends to expand the program to other MDAs in January 2023. I have requested the Head of Civil Service of the Federation to mandate other MDAs to cooperate in the implementation Program implementation to empower targeted officials with final literacy. accountability.
“There is great concern about how government employees manage their finances. These days, public sector employees are facing serious financial challenges due to the downturn in the economy. Studies have shown that the lack of primary skills on how to manage money, save and invest is one of the reasons why public sector employees experience financial problems.
“Another study found that most civil servants do not cultivate savings habits, but they probably spend more than they earn.
“Financial education can alleviate financial crises for public servants. This measure can also help promote economic recovery and reduce poverty. The pilot phase should reach 12,000 employees by December 2022.”
The minister said the program will last as long as the government is able to empower the majority of people with low financial literacy.
“So it will last at least three years, but it depends on the number of people who will be captured during this period. If we find that we are unable to capture the target audience, the target will be expanded.
“At the moment we are starting with the Ministry of Finance, but we are asking the office of the Head of the Federation Civil Service to ensure that this trickles down to the whole service,” she added. .