Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
Ondo State Governor, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu yesterday disbursed N166 million soft loan to traders and co-operative organisations in the state.
Speaking during the disbursement of the cheques, Akeredolu said the scheme was to assist the unemployed but productive poor people in the state to become self-reliant.
Akeredolu who said apart from assisting the small and medium scale enterprise, the scheme was put in place to make fund easily accessible to people, devoid of stringent conditions normally posed by conventional banks.
He disclosed that the sum of N57m was disbursed by the state Micro Credit Agency to market women, trade groups and individual entrepreneurs in the state to further demonstrate the present administration commitment towards wealth creation and economic empowerment of its people.
Akeredolu said the measure was part of his administration’s determined efforts to tackle poverty, banish hunger and create wealth in the state.
He said “there is no gain saying the fact that the challenges facing governments of most developing countries, Nigeria inclusive, is that of poverty reduction.
“Our government is fully conscious of this fact and has, therefore, not relented in putting in place various poverty reduction programmes including micro credit loans for the benefit of our people, all aimed at improving their socio- economic well-being to achieve sustainable livelihood.”
He advised the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the credit facilities by investing it in productive venture and to see the loan as a facility to be paid back.
“I will therefore enjoin beneficiaries to be faithful to the terms and conditions of the loan to ensure sustainability of the scheme” he said.
The governor reiterated the commitment of his administration to delivering benefits of good governance to the greatest number of people of the state, and appealed to people to show understanding by reciprocating government kind gestures.
In her welcome address, the Chairman of the State Micro- Credit Agency, Mrs. Kosemani Kolawole, commended some beneficiaries who have not defaulted in the repayment of the loan, apart from making judicious use of the fund.
According to Kolawole, “one of the groups has taken loans seven times and has not disappointed the agency and today we shall celebrated the group and honor them with gifts and awards for being worthy clients.