The First Lady of Edo State, Mrs. Betsy Obaseki, on Wednesday, said the state government in collaboration with the Bank of Industry (BOI), would soon commence the disbursement of interest-free loans to two thousand women to grow their businesses in the state.


Mrs. Obaseki who said this while speaking on the activities of her pet project, Edo Women for Agriculture and Enterprise (EWAE), assured women leaders from the eighteen local government councils of the state, that the scope of the project has been expanded.


“The Edo Women for Agriculture and Enterprise initiative has been successful. We have recorded over 85 per cent success rate, and most of our women have done well. Due to this success, I have decided to expand the scope of the programme to include general enterprise that can grow the state’s economy and empower our people,” Mrs. Obaseki said.


She explained that there were several programmes in the bouquet of the Bank of Industry, designed to support the initiative, and grow the micro, small and medium enterprise sub-sectors. She added: “I am also working towards getting support and funding from outside the state and country as part of my contributions to the economy of the state.”


She said the criteria for qualifying for the loan facility includes membership of a registered cooperative that has serious and credible executives, whose members must be diligent traders who are ready to pay back the loans at the stipulated time.


Mrs. Obaseki said the loan amount would be between fifty and one hundred thousand naira with a repayment period of six months.