The Buhari government has said over 10,000 traders in Bayelsa State have benefited from its Tradermoni free interest loan empowerment scheme.
The announcement followed resumption of sharing of the business support fund at major markets including Tombia-Etegwe roundabout, Okaka market, among others.
Critics are condemning the timing, as the Bayelsa governorship election holds November 16, 2019.
Officer in charge of Strategy and Operations in the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP), Taiwo Tunmobi, said over 20,000 traders had earlier registered for the programme.
He explained that 10,000 were considered to benefit from the first batch.
Tunmobi disclosed that two options were given to the beneficiaries to make daily payment of N85.00 or N430.00 weekly to the tradermoni account of the federal government in any bank of their choice after two weeks of grace.
He said: “Those who finish the repayment of their first loan on time stand the opportunity to receive higher amount of N15,000 and so on. The federal government has a very big plan for the empowerment of small scale enterprises.
“The programme is for the federal government to empower traders, artisans and it makes it easier for young entrepreneurs to grow their businesses.
“Of course, our targets are micro business SMEs; these are people who typically have zero access to credit. As the government helps them to grow their businesses, their families will benefit and the economy will also benefit”, the official stressed.