AKURE – The Ondo State Micro-Credit Agency (OSMA), says it has disbursed N80 million as loan to small scale entrepreneurs in the last six months in the state.
The General Manager of the agency, Mr Dele Ologbese, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Akure on Tuesday that 1,350 residents of the state benefited from the scheme.
Ologbese said that the loan, which was in different categories, was meant to alleviate poverty among the people.
“A total of 1,350 beneficiaries had received N80 million as loans from OSMA from January 2014 till date.”
He said that the loan was given to those who had assured the agency of their eagerness and sincerity to judiciously utilise the fund and pay back in due time.
The general manager said that the beneficiaries, who had viable business plans, were selected through due process.
Ologbese said: “what we do is to give loans to applicants that we have confidence will pay back promptly because the loans are not free gifts.”
According to him, prospective applicants for some categories of the loan should form cooperative societies to enable them qualify for them.
He said that there were other conditions to meet to qualify for the loans, including collateral such as building which was required from any applicant that wanted a huge amount.
“We encourage them to form groups and there are some conditions attached to the loans such as having a guarantor.”
The general manager said that only a civil servant on salary of GL 8 and above could guarantee an applicant for a soft loan.[eap_ad_2]
The general manager explained that “security/collateral requirement depends on the volume of loan being sought.”
He told NAN that the agency was charging nine per cent interest on the loans with a repayment period of 13 months.
Olegbese said that the least loan that was given was N50, 000, pointing out that an applicant could be granted a loan running into millions of naira, depending on scope of his/her business.
According to him, granting of huge loans to an applicant is at the discretion of the governor of the state.
He rebuffed the rumour that the loans were given to only to members of the ruling party, saying that they were meant to better the lives of all the people.
“Loans from this agency cuts across all strata of people from all political parties in the state. We are open because there is no party affiliation attached to them.
“The disbursement is done on bases of needs of the people from different groups and parts of the state.”
The general manager urged beneficiaries whose loans were due for repayment to pay back so that others could benefit from the scheme.
He said that the Central Bank of Nigeria was considering assisting Ondo state in some of its economic programmes, because of its laudable efforts to boost the people’s economic base. (NAN)[eap_ad_3]