The Ogun State Government has initiated the second phase of the disbursement of a N1 billion grant to micro and small enterprises (SMEs) aimed at ameliorating the impact of COVID-19 on businesses and uplifting local entrepreneurs.
Mr. Adebola Sofela, the Commissioner for Industry, Trade, and Investment and a member of the Ogun State COVID-19 Action Recovery and Economic Stimulus (OGUN CARES) Steering Committee, announced Governor Dapo Abiodun’s directive to commence the second phase of grants disbursement immediately.
Entrepreneurs across Ogun State will benefit from this phase, with a stakeholder engagement session slated for the Ogun Central Senatorial District at the Obas Complex Hall, Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta, on Tuesday, November 21, 2023, to inaugurate the second phase. These sessions aim to inform participants about the application process and eligibility criteria.
Sofela mentioned that details for stakeholder engagement sessions in Ogun West and East Senatorial Districts will be communicated later.
The initial disbursement saw over N120 million granted to more than 1,000 micro and small entrepreneurs across the state’s twenty local government areas. In response, beneficiaries expressed gratitude to the governor through an appreciation letter.
Representative trade associations, such as the Nigerian Association of Small Scale Industrialists (NASSI), Association of Small Business Owners of Nigeria (ASBON), Joint National Association of Persons Living With Disabilities (JONAPWD), Artisans Groups, and Market Men and Women, lauded the Governor’s support during the challenging times. They highlighted increased operational costs, struggles in meeting salary obligations, and expenses related to operational equipment, utilities, and shop rentals.
Sofela concluded by expressing belief that the grant would significantly relieve businesses in the state and encouraged stakeholders to stay informed about further updates concerning the disbursement process.