No fewer than 113 market women in Abeokuta South Local Government Area of Ogun State have received N50,000 each, as free-interest soft loans under the Federal Government National Social Intervention Programme (NSIP), to boost their respective businesses, just as plans are on to replicate the same gesture in other council areas.
Presenting ATM cards to the beneficiaries to enable them access the fund, Commissioner for Special Duties and Inter-Governmental Affairs, Hon. Olufemi Ilori-Oduntan, said the loan facility tagged, ‘’Trader Moni’’ was an empowerment initiative through the Government Enterprise Empowerment Programme (GEEP), created for the Nigeria economy through access to finance for petty traders.
Hon. Ilori-Oduntan noted that the Prince Dapo Abiodun-led administration was committed to improving the small-scale businesses for the economic growth of the State, pointing out that the government would continue to initiate programmes targeted at alleviating poverty and providing access to funds for other entrepreneurs.
The Commissioner disclosed that the State government had been vigorously pursuing the two broad objectives of the GEEP, which were; access to funding and financial inclusion, saying it had provided microloans in an easily accessible way to those at the bottom of the pyramid who engage in commercial activities and face significant challenges with access to finance.
She said, ’’the State government will continue to monitor how the loans are given and utilised by beneficiaries to grow their small scale businesses’’, urging them to use the loan for productive ventures and solicited their continuous support to enable the government to deliver on its mandate to the people
Speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries, Mrs. Boluwatife Alabi, applauded the State and Federal Governments for sustaining the initiative, promising that the funds would be judiciously used to enhance their businesses.