Ogun State Commissioner for Industry Trade and Investment, Mrs. Kikelomo Longe has called on beneficiaries of the zero-interest loan from the FCMB SheVentures to make judicious use of the credit facility and repay the loan as stipulated in the agreement so as to enable more Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) owned by women in the State benefit
Mrs. Longe made the call while speaking during the presentation of cheques to women beneficiaries during the 2020 Women Entrepreneurship Day organised by the Office of the Wife of the Ogun State Governor in collaboration with FCMB SheVentures held at the Conference Hotel, Abeokuta.
She stated that the loan which ranges from N500,000 to N5M was facilitated by the Office of the Wife of the Governor noting that it should be seen as a seed which must be well utilised to improve their businesses especially in view of the negative effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on businesses globally.
“Beneficiaries of this zero-interest loan should use this loan to grow their businesses. It’s zero-interest loan but it’s not a grant. When beneficiaries repay the loan it will further make a case for more women to get more loans through this platform,”she said.
The Commissioner noted that her Ministry would continue to build a stronger partnership with FCMB SheVentures to ensure more women entrepreneurs in the State are empowered in terms of access to capital and capacity building stressing that empowering women would help in lifting more Nigerians out of poverty and bring about the actualisation of national development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
She lauded the lender for providing the facility especially at this period where businesses are in need of capital to grow their business calling on the organisation to continue to support women entrepreneurs through access to capital and capacity building programs.
Speaking earlier during her welcome address, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Industry, Trade and Investment, Ms. Sola Arobieke lauded the contribution of the SheVentures for supporting Ogun women in business despite the pandemic and different challenges that have threatened global economy in the year
The Executive Director, Business Development, FCMB, Mrs. Bukola Smith said the bank is focused on empowering women as it is a catalyst to Sustainable Development, job creation and poverty reduction.
She added that those empowered were selected based on certain criteria adding that the financial institution would continue to provide necessary support to all the beneficiaries to ensure their success as well as provide more of such loans to women entrepreneurs.
Speaking on behalf of other beneficiaries, Mrs. Cynthia Saka appreciated the SheVentures for the loan describing it as a timely support for women entrepreneurs in the State assuring that they would not disappoint in the repayment of the loan.