Abia State Govt Set To Disburse Interest Free Loans To About 10,000 Abians

1. On Thursday, July 11, 2024, Governor Alex C. Otti will formally launch the Abia State Cooperatives Support Scheme through which an estimated 10, 000 men, women and young people running different micro and small scale businesses in their various communities will benefit from a revolving interest-free loan programme initiated and promoted by the State Government.

2. Beneficiaries are members of registered community cooperative groups with clearly defined businesses interests that are relevant within their communities.

3. In the selection of the present batch of beneficiaries, priority was given to women and young people with established micro and small scale businesses in sectors such as agriculture, food and consumables, petty trading, and local crafts, amongst others.

4. The process is managed by the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Cooperatives, Hon. Ishmael Onuoha, working very closely with the relevant community stakeholders across the 184 wards in the State- including elected and appointed officials from various parts of the State.

5. Beneficiaries will be required to repay the loan at no interests within a defined period so that other members within the community cooperatives structure can also benefit as the programme is designed as a revolving loan scheme. For emphasis, it is not a settlement programme for the politically connected. This, it is important to state, is strictly business.

6. Through this initiative, the Dr. Alex Otti administration is working to enhance business consciousness amongst our people at the grassroots by providing support to those who already have something they are doing but would do better through improved access to funds.

7. This initiative will help revive many micro and small scale businesses that have shut down in the various communities on account of economic difficulties, and peculiar circumstances.

8. Importantly, this effort will also support our people at the grassroots to fend for themselves through the proceeds of their businesses, enhancing their productive abilities and opening for them, the doors of bigger opportunities.

9. The Dr. Alex Otti administration is committing about a billion naira to this initiative. The expectation is that the injection of this fund into the State’s economy, along with the various infrastructural restoration projects, will combine to go a long way in rejuvenating the economy of the communities, helping to tackle the menace of poverty amongst thousands of households.

10. A promise made, a promise fulfilled. Yes. Regular support to micro and small scale businesses through the various community-based cooperatives was a major campaign promise the Alex Otti/LP campaign made during various campaign stops in communities while seeking the support of the people. While the average politician is almost guaranteed to forget just about everything said to get votes, our dear Governor is proving daily that his focus is not entirely politics, but to make a difference- in the life of the ordinary people.

Abia is rising. Let us remain consistent in our support for the present administration as it continues to work for our collective good.