By; NIYI OGUNGBOLA, Abeokuta
Wife of Ogun State Governor, Mrs. Bamidele Abiodun has presented cheques worth N26m interest free loan to 11 women entrepreneurs in her quest to empower women in the society.
Mrs. Abiodun, at the event marking the 2020 Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, at Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, restated her commitment to ensuring women entrepreneurs in the state, have access to loan opportunities, for the growth of their businesses.
She said it was necessary for government and corporate bodies to assist the women folk, saying, “when we reflect on the mandate of Women’s Entrepreneurship Day, we are reminded that educated women are powerful force for change, that is why I am a strong proponent of girl child empowerment, because the long term gains for our societies are worth the investment”.
The First Lady disclosed that her office received correspondence from She-Ventures team in January, 2020, explaining that the vision behind the initiative was to empower women in business in Ogun.
She said the gesture would help open women entrepreneurs up to potential opportunities around them.
“In January this year, I received some correspondence from the team, explaining the vision behind SHE-VENTURES. It was a simple vision to empower women in business in Ogun State. The initiative was their response to growing calls to support women owned enterprises through financial and non- financial means, that can open them up to potential opportunities around them”, she remarked.
Mrs. Abiodun appreciated FCMB SheVentures team for supporting Ogun State Government and advised the beneficiaries to put the loan to judicious use.
Commissioner for Industry, Trade and Investment, Mrs. Kikelomo Longe, former Ogun State Deputy Governor, Alhaja Salmot Badru, former, Speaker, Ogun State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Titi Oseni and Ms. Bukola Onabanjo in their goodwill messages, unanimously enjoined the beneficiaries to invest the loan wisely, so as to be qualified for more after their repayment tenure.
The Executive Director, Business Development, FCMB, Mrs. Bukola Smith in her address, acknowledged the role of Mrs. Abiodun in empowering women in the State, promising that the bank would continue to be supportive of her office and the women folk.
She stated that FCMB recognised the role of women as entrepreneurs, nation builders and catalysts to sustainable development, explaining that the initiative was to give special attention to women entrepreneurs for easier access to finance, capacity building and building networks, which according to her would in turn bring about job creation and poverty reduction in the society.