Nigeria’s Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, has described Enugu state as one of the best states in the country that have performed exceedingly well in the federal government’s Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) programme.
Osinbajo gave the commendations in Enugu, during the launch of TraderMoni initiative of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration at the Artisan Market in Enugu North Local Government Area.
The Vice President also applauded the administration of Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi for its contributions towards the success of the entrepreneurship programme, stressing that “we have received a great deal of support from the state government”.
“The joint efforts is to make sure that our people especially traders and small businesses are able to benefit from the programme of the federal government and to create a conducive environment that would enable the beneficiaries do their businesses with some degree of comfort.
“If small businesses prosper, the nation will prosper. This is why Mr. President decided that we must do the scheme called MarketMoni in collaboration with the Bank of Industry (BOI) and TraderMoni also
“The scheme was very important for us and a win-win for everybody who participates because it puts money in the hands of traders so that the traders can invest more in their inventory, the things they sell, and they can become wealthier and employ people also,” he explained.
Prof. Osinbajo disclosed that 4,577 traders in Enugu State have so far benefited from the MarketMoni while 23,834 traders have equally benefited from the TraderMoni adding that “We intend to do more”.
The Vice President who thanked Governor Ugwuanyi for his hospitality added that “it is always a pleasure to pass through Enugu State as you are always extremely hospitable to us”.
The Enugu Governor described the exercise as “most remarkable because of its direct positive impact on micro entrepreneurs and artisans in Enugu state”.
Ugwuanyi stated that the scheme was intended to reduce poverty amongst the Nigerian people and consequentially reduce crime and improve security of lives and property consistent with the Nigerian constitutional injunction that the primary purpose of government shall be the security and welfare of the people.
“As a government, we have not rested on our oars in pursuit of this noble agenda. It is heartwarming to share with you that over the past four years, we have painstakingly institutionalized the Enugu State Traders Empowerment Scheme operationalized through monthly raffle draw across the 54 markets in our state.
“To date, 3600 traders have emerged winners of N50,000 each with visible improvement in their merchandise. We are certainly partners in progress,” he said.
Governor Ugwuanyi further disclosed that the Enugu SME Center has been the leading voice and platform for promotion of GEEP of the federal government in the state.
He reiterated his administration’s commitment to make government services available to all residents in the state.
“We are desirous to create wealth as well as jobs and live in a safe and secure environment,” he said.
The scheme is a non-collateral and interest-free loan for petty traders to earn a living, create wealth and job opportunities for those in the rural and urban communities especially the teeming youth, under the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP) of the National Social Investments Programme.
It is domiciled in the Office of the Vice President and implemented by the Bank of Industry (BOI).