KANO State governor, Dr Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has said that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has released N2 billion Small and Medium Enterprises fund to the state and would soon be disbursed to artisans.
He stated that women would constitute 63 per cent of beneficiaries of the fund, which is an interest free loan, through the 37 microfinance banks established by the state government.
According to him, “the decision to allocate larger percentage of the money to women is because of the desire to empower them economically and lift families out of poverty.
He made the assertion on Tuesday during the inauguration of the reconstituted boards of the microfinance.
According to the governor, the boards of the banks were dissolved and replaced with new ones to give them a new lease of life.
“The banks were virtually dead when we came in and the money was stolen. The banks were disorganised. We have to reorganise them to enable them perform up to expectation,” the governor maintained.
Governor Ganduje added that the state anti-corruption agency has been directed to focus its search light on the banks so that anyone found misappropriating funds would face the full wrath of the law.
He directed local government councils in the state to patronise the microfinance banks, especially by depositing their revenue funds, adding that the state government would also help the banks to become vibrant by carrying out its empowerment programmes through them.