The Kwara state Government, on Tuesday flagged off the disbursement of N160, 550,000 in grants to 688 small and micro-scale businesses in the first tranche of the KWARA NG CARES RA3 Operational Grants.
These beneficiaries comprise 45 Small Scale businesses that will receive N700, 000 each, and 623 micro-scale businesses that will receive N200, 000 each cutting across the 16 Local Government Areas of the state.
In his welcome speech, the General Manager of KWASSIP, Abdulquawiy Olododo stated that the programme is a World Bank-assisted emergency recovery and intervention program that is being facilitated by the Kwara State Government to curb the impact of Covid-19 on businesses in the state as well as to provide economic relief and improve the employment rate in the state.
He further stated that the programme is kicking off disbursement with the Operational Grant, which will be followed closely by the Credit Grant and IT Enhancement Grant.
The General Manager added that the programme is one of the many efforts of Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq to improve the quality and ease of running businesses in Kwara State.
The Acting Technical Head of the NG CARES For MSMEs RA3, Mrs. Rukayat Yahaya urged beneficiaries to utilize the grants in covering operational expenditures to incentivize employment retention and to keep their businesses running as this grant is an emergency recovery fund designed to help their businesses recover from the effect of COVID-19 pandemic.
She also stated that the Operational Grant will be followed by the Credit Grant for easing financial constraints on MSEs and IT Enhancement Grant for upgrading MSEs capabilities.
Presenting the cheques to beneficiaries were, the deputy speaker Kwara State House of Assembly, Adetiba Olanrewaju Rafael, the Commissioner of Finance Mrs. Florence Oyeyemi, amongst others.
In his closing remark, the Commissioner for Business Innovation and Technology, Ibrahim Akaje, encouraged all beneficiaries to make use of the opportunity given to them as well as encourage and guide other business owners on the paths to pursuing opportunities like this.
Oyeyemi commended the government and implementing unit on transparency of process. She further urged beneficiaries to appreciate the effort of the state government as this is first of its kind in the state.