Feedback from the field and testimonies from stakeholders including beneficiaries indicate that the TraderMoni and MarketMoni loan schemes are doing very well, and beneficiaries are indeed paying back their loans, according to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.
Prof. Osinbajo stated this on Tuesday during an interaction with journalists after his assessment visit to markets in Keffi and Masaka towns of Nasarawa State, where loans under the TraderMoni and MarketMoni schemes are being disbursed to traders.
According to the Vice President “It is going very well, and I am excited to hear the testimonies of the traders who have done so well after getting their first loan. It is also exciting to see that they have repaid their loans very quickly, because as you pay back, you are able to get more; when you get N10, 000, and you pay back, you get N15, 000 and it gets to N20, 000, when you repay, all the way to N100, 000, and it is so exciting to see that these traders are doing so well.
“Everybody is keying in already, what we want to do is to expand it so that more traders can get this facility, so we need to do more because at the moment, we have done close to 2 million but we need to increase the number”.
The Vice President urged beneficiaries of the loan schemes to continue to pay back their loans so they can get more money and become very successful in business.
Prof. Osinbajo said the target of the Federal Government in the Next Level is to expand the scheme to cover more traders and also increase the amount received to enable beneficiaries expand their businesses.
According to him, “we want to expand the TraderMoni and MarketMoni to include more people in every state, so we have only just started. More of the traders who are here will get the TraderMoni and the MarketMoni.
“So long as you continue to pay back you will continue to get more money. We want to make sure that every petty trader in the market have enough so that they themselves can even employ more people and pay their children’s school fees and also build their own houses. As I told you, we are going to expand the scheme so that more people can benefit.”
Earlier at the palace of the Emir of Keffi, Alhaji Shehu Chindo Yamusa, Prof. Osinbajo said his visit to the State was to assess the disbursement of the TraderMoni and MarketMoni loans to traders in markets across the States.
He said “TraderMoni is the President’s own way of empowering women and men who are traders. For many of them, their inventories are very small, it could be people hawking groundnuts, selling bread and other basic things. Most of them don’t have enough capital to improve their businesses. So, what we do is to empower them through the Bank of Industry.
“So, we want to ensure that people who are trading have an opportunity and that opportunity is provided when we are able to give them capital as part of this TraderMoni scheme. So, that is why we are here.”
On the Emir’s appeal about improving educational standards, the Vice President said President Buhari is determined to improve both access and quality of education to all Nigerians regardless of their socio-economic backgrounds.
According to him, “One of the other things that I think you might be happy to hear is the President’s determination to this question of education. On June 20th this year, while speaking to Governors when he inaugurated the National Economic Council, he made the point that the Federal Government will enforce, along with the State governments, the law on free and compulsory education of the first 9 years of the child’s school life.
“It is a very important thing because we all know that education the key to the economic success, the key to self-realization and the key that enables any person live a dignified life. So, we are extremely concerned on how to improve education; Technical education in particular, I think that it is very important.
“As a matter of fact, under our N-Power scheme we already have a number of technical education schemes going on. We have what we call N-Build which is technical education for persons involved in the building industry (tillers, brick layers etc). We also have training for extension workers, persons who will provide extension service. There is the one for persons involved in technical training like carpenter, electricians and many others.”
He added that the Federal Government in collaboration with State governments are committed to “doing more in terms of technical education and also in supporting the states for education especially making primary education and first three years of secondary education free and compulsory as well as the education of young women”.
In his remarks, the Emir of Keffi, Alhaji Shehu Chindo Yamusa who commended the Vice President for his show of concern and interest in the welfare of the people of Nasarawa State and Keffi in particular, appealed to the Federal Government to review the nation’s education curriculum to integrate vocational and technical education to address youth unemployment.