Ekiti State Government will on Wednesday, begin the disbursement of N500 million Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) loan to 4,564 beneficiaries.
The N500 million is the first tranche of the N2 billion the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) earmarked for the support of small and medium scale enterprises in the state.
The 4,564 beneficiaries will get minimum of N50,000 and maximum of N1 million.
The state Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, disclosed this in Ado-Ekiti while meeting with the management of Community and Micro-Finance Banks in the state. The banks are to serve as the medium of disbursing the loans to beneficiaries.
In a statement in Ado-Ekiti by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Mr Idowu Adelusi, the governor will also meet beneficiaries of the loan at the Governor’s Office later in the week.
Governor Fayose said the loans would not be allowed to go down the drain like previous experiences, adding that the state government stood as surety for the beneficiaries.
“I am happy to let the good people of Ekiti know that the first tranche of N500 million has been given to the state from the N2 billion we are expecting to help SMES grow in our state. The release of the remaining sum is predicated on how well this first payment is utilised.
“On the part of the state government, we will ensure that beneficiaries utilise the loan judiciously. This is not going to be seen as a largesse from the government or the so-called national cake.
Beneficiaries will be adequately monitored, as the state government is the one that guaranteed the loan.
“On the part of the disbursing banks, that is community and micro-finance banks, we are giving them adequate warning that anyone that fails to live up to expectations will be punished. There is no room for any shady deal. We want a judicious use of the funds for the economic growth of our dear state,” he said.
The state Commissioner for Finance, Chief Toyin Ojo, said a monitoring and recovery team had been set up and that every effort would be made so that beneficiaries would not default.