Kaduna State Deputy Governor, Dr. Hadiza Balarabe has said the State is committed to actualising the empowerment of women and youths, and as such there was no going back on the programme.
Dr. Balarabe stated this during the Inception Meeting of the Technical Assistance for the Preparation & Review of Business Investment Plan (BIP) for Women and Youth Empowerment Programme (WYEP) Beneficiaries held in kaduna at the weekend.
The Deputy Governor disclosed that the World Bank Agro-Processing Productivity Enhancement And Livelihood Improvement Support Project (APPEAL) is one of the good steps to actualise Kaduna State’s desire to empower women.
Represented by the Deputy Chief of Staff, Kaduna State Government House, James Kanyip, the deputy governor said that the project will not only be beneficial to the state, but Nigeria in general.
Dr. Balarabe who is the Chairperson State Steering Committee of the project added that the country is now diversifying from oil to agriculture, “so the Agro-Processing Productivity Enhancement And Livelihood Improvement Support Project (APPEAL) is a good project”.
Earlier, Women and Youth Livelihood Specialist, Ibrahim Yakubu disclosed that Women and Youth Empowerment Programme (WYEP) has trained some of the beneficiaries, while others are yet to be trained due to outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic.
Yakubu also announced that the beneficiaries were trained at three different centres, adding, “while those yet to be trained due to outbreak of COVID-19 will get their training in November this year”.
He said that WYEP is a sub component of the APPEALS Project which 1,700 are expected to benefit.
He said 50 per cent of the Beneficiaries under the component are female.
Yakubu explained that the value chain under this component includes dairy, maize, rice, wheat, cashew, ginger and others.
The objectives according to him, include attracting more people to farming.
He said the selection process of beneficiaries started with sensitization in the 23 LGAs in the state in 2019.
The specialist added that they also advertised on two national dailies , electronic media and social media.
Furthermore, he said they issued free forms to applicants and engaged in biometric capture of over 3,000 shortlisted applicants before verification, screening and selection of 1,700 beneficiaries through a very transparent process.
He said engagement letters were issued to successful 1,700 beneficiaries in December 2019.
He said the BIP preparation and review cuts across the three zones in the state, Zaria, Kafanchan and Kaduna.