LAGOS – The Apapa-Iganmu Local Council Development Area (LCDA) of Lagos State has disbursed N320 million as loans under its micro credit scheme within the last three years.
Dr Adesola Adedayo, the LCDA Chairman, said on Friday at Ijora-Badiya, while reviewing the activities of the council at a stake-holders forum.
He said that more than 8,000 petty traders, artisans and small-scale manufacturers in the area benefited from the scheme.
Adedayo said that the scheme has remained the bed-rock of his women and youth empowerment programme.
“A major highlight of this heart-warming report is that customers’ re-payment stood at over 99 per cent while total portfolio at risk (doubtful and bad debt) stood at N1.5 million.
“Considering the canons of lending employed in the packaging and delivery of these soft loans, I cannot but commend the integrity of our people.
“Your response has put to rest the widely held misconception that lending to the poor is risky and fraught with uncertainty,’’ he said.
The chairman also said that the scheme was rooted in a tripartite agreement between the council, Lagos State Micro-Finance Institution (LASMI) and Infinity Micro-Finance Bank Ltd.
Adedayo said that the council was committed to creation of more employment opportunities through promotion of small-scale industries and vocational training.
The chairman, who is a medical practitioner, said that the council had, under its free health programme, performed 100 eye surgeries (mostly cataract extractions) and 670 other surgical cases of hernia, appendectomies, ovarian cysts, gynaecology and dentistry.
Adedayo said that the council had built a new N300 million secretariat and tarred many roads with standard drainage in its seven wards within the period under review.
On education, he said that 12,000 packs of exercise books, 12,000 pairs of school uniforms and 12,000 pairs of school sandals were distributed to public school pupils in the area.
The council, he said, also rehabilitated the Army Children School, Baptist Primary School and Anglican Primary School, all in Marine Beach.
Adedayo said that JAMB examination forms were purchased for 400 indigent students while intensive free coaching clinics were organised for them by the council.
He also said the council provided uninterrupted 12-hour street lighting to reduce the security challenges in the Ijora and Orile communities. (NAN)