Borno State Flags Off N2 Billion Matching Fund Scheme ... Disburses N1Billion to 15,861 Traders Repayable in 4 Years

By Sadiq Abubakar, The Nigerian Voice, Maiduguri
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Governor Babagama Umara Zulum of Borno State on Wednesday flagged off the disbursement of a N2 Billion Matching Fund Scheme in collaboration with the Bank of Industry (BOI) to boost economic activities in the state as post Insurgency programme.

He also said that the scheme was introduced after thorough and considerable deliberation with the BOI to support the Borno people who are affected by the Insurgency in the past 21 years that virtually almost paralysed socio economic activities of the state.

The governor while launching the scheme at the Multi Purpose Hall of the Government House Maiduguri today, the matching funds will be managed and coordinated by the Borno Microfinance bank in collaboration with the Bank of Industry which will disburse the Funds to each individual beneficiary through the bank account of the beneficiaries with the Borno Microfinance bank.

He aded that the loan Facility has a repayment period of 4 years and commencement of th said loan Facility will kick up after 6 months to enable the beneficiaries start up or invest their loans for a while .

Gov. Zulum further explained that any of the beneficiaries that repay his or her loan on time within a short period , will benefit 50% discount in addition of the free interest charge that the loan Facility has been disbursed on non interest payment.

Describing the loan disbursement as an all incusive and aggressive benefit for the people who are mostly affected by the Insurgency. He said 12 associations or unions were selected within the state capital Maiduguri city and its environs with membership of 15,861 individuals to benefit in the first phase of the scheme while the remaining LGAs will very soon benefit from the counterpart funding as the second phase on the same procedures.

He also charged those in charge of th disbursement to monitor and supervise proper utilization of the Funds and ensure defaulters are brought to book and deleted in the list of the beneficiaries while assuring to empower the youths and women .

Governor Zulum added that his Government was also in discussions with the Islamic Development Bank and African Development Bank to support Borno People to assist another set of people across the state especially on agriculture.

He said the state Government was considering reopening all markets across the state while others within the state capital and few LGAs will soon be re-opened as he planned to give matching order for all the markets to be re-opened in th state.

The State Commissioner of Commerce and Industries, Alhaji Yerima Lawan Kareto said that government intend to disburse loans to petty traders across the state to enhance their occupations as post Insurgency measures to improve living condition of the people and give the people means of livelihood.

"Towards this direction, Borno State Government signed a pact with the Bank of Industry to support some traders where 12 were selected comprising of Monday Market Traders Association, Baban Layi Textiles Traders Association, Livestock Sellers Association, Women Traders Association, Fire Wood Sellers Association, Vegetable Sellers Association, Grocery Sellers Association, Beans Cake and Fry Yam Sellers Association among others.

According to him, each individual will benefit from the scheme ranging from N30,000 minimum amount to N1.5 million highest amount depending on the individual trade or business as the beneficiaries comprised of businessmen and women cut across the 12 selected associations and unions.

He added that the associations got a minimum of N7 Million and a maximum of N403 million based on the occupation or profession of the association to collect their individual money from the bank through their bank accounts (online) and commence repayment after a grace of 6 months without interest charged for the loan.

Th Chairman of Monday Market Traders Association, Alhaji Awaji Bukar thanked th Govenror for his support to the traders and prayed for his Government while the Chairman of the Baban Layi Textiles Traders Association, Professor Mustaoha Kokori appreciated the Govenror's gesture and urged him to continue to support the less privileged in the society, especially those affected by the Insurgency and prayed for him to succeed delivering dividends of democracy to the people .

Borno Women Leader, Hajiya Fati Kakinna Alkali Kareto thanked the governor for his support to th womenfolk and assured him that Borno women will continue to support his administration.