Kogi State Focal Person on Covid-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus(CARES), Mukadam Asiwaju Asiru Idris, says the State Government has concluded plans to kick-start an empowerment programme on MSMEs in collaboration with Bank of Industry to alleviate the effect of the Covid-19 on the people
Asiwaju told newsmen in Lokoja on Monday that the initiative tagged “Bello-Kogi Enterprise and Empowerment Programme”, Bello-KEEP, was designed by the team to drive Result Area 3 of CARES programme in Kogi State.
The Ministry of Commerce and Industry in conjunction with the state GEEP will drive the programme , he explained.
Asiwaju who is also the Commissioner for Finance, Budget and Economic Planning, said the program would be targeting existing MSMEs in the state, noting that Kogi CARES has adopted the state SME and Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme ,GEEP platforms to deliver a real-time implementation system to ensure all round efficiency.
“The program will run a digital implementation system from registration of MSMEs through the selection process to the cash disbursement to qualified beneficiaries in order to ensure that most businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic recover efficiently.
“Our plan is to build a robust, transparent, real time automated database of beneficiaries to ease the entire implementation and management process up till the repayment stage”.
The selection process after successful enumeration, include physical assessment, verification and white listing.
Asiwaju further noted that the captured beneficiaries will receive zero interest grants/loans depending on net worth of business to boost their businesses with the hope of returning the economy to normalcy.
In addition, he said, Governor Yahaya Bello has approved initial engagement of 100 agents that will be deployed across the state for data capturing. The successful agents will begin training this week, he concluded.