- Economic benefit to the South-east, entire country, will be huge
The federal government is committed to the completion of the Second Niger Bridge, the access roads as well as other ongoing projects in South-east geopolitical zone, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said.
He gave the assurance yesterday when he inspected the Delta State axis of the bridge.
Osinbajo, who was on a one-day working visit to Anambra State to launch the second phase of TraderMoni, a federal government micro-credit scheme for petty traders, said the Buhari administration was determined to complete the
Second Niger Bridge on schedule because of its economic benefits to the zone and the entire country.
He said: “The Second Niger Bridge is among the five projects where money has actually been set aside under a presidential funding initiative to ensure completion. So, we have no fears that it will be completed as promised and scheduled.
“We want to make sure that even in terms of execution of projects, we are fair and just, which is the commitment that the president has made. The President is committed to ensuring that he brings this to fulfillment.”
The Vice President reiterated government’s commitment to ensuring that the country remained united, “where nobody would be oppressed.”
He said: “We are all brothers regardless of religion, ethnicity or political affiliation.”
Meanwhile, petty traders in Awka, Anambra State and Onitsha the commercial nerve center of the state, were yesterday elated as the Vice President launched the second phase of the TraderMoni and MarketMoni in the state.
The schemes were launched in both Eke Awka in Awka South Local Government Area and Ochanja Market in Onitsha.
The traders went into jubilant mode immediately Osinbajo arrived Eke Awka market at about 12 pm, as they sang the praise of the federal government.
Our correspondent gathered from beneficiaries that the amounts ranging from N10,000 for beneficiaries of the TraderMoni and N50,000 for the beneficiaries of the MarketMoni had been paid to the traders the previous day.
Osinbajo, who arrived with the state governor, Chief Willie Obiano, and the Executive director of the Bank of Industry (BoI), Mrs. Toyin Adeniji, moved round the market to interact with the beneficiaries who were happy about the receipt of the money.
Some of the beneficiaries who spoke to THISDAY said the money would help them to buy more wares and also enhance their profit margin, thereby improving the standard of living of their families.
A press release by Mrs. Adeniji, said the launch of the second phase was to sustain the continued efforts to meet the primary objective of “broadening financial inclusion, and increasing access to affordable credit for traders and small business owners.”
She said: “This phase will target at least 2,000 new TraderMoni and MarketMoni beneficiaries. This is in addition to the over 30,000 TraderMoni and 4,000 plus MarketMoni beneficiaries that received the GEEP loans in the first phase, between 2017 and 2018.
“Prior to this official market activation, 200 new MarketMoni beneficiaries had been recorded in the state. The second phase will also target traders for the N15,000 Next Level TraderMoni loans for traders who have repaid the first N10,000 loan.”
Speaking in the same vein, the Anambra State, Governor Willie Obiano, hailed the TraderMoni and MarketMoni initiative.
He said the scheme would encourage the culture of repayment of loans and ensure the prosperity of traders.
The governor also commended the federal government’s zeal towards the ongoing Second Niger Bridge and the completed Zik Mausoleum.
On his part, the Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Achebe, suggested that the federal government should set up a Board of Trustees to manage the affairs of the Zik Mausoleum.