Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday clarified that there is no politics involved in the federal government’s micro credit programme tagged tradermoni.
He said contrary to insinuations in some quarters, it was neither buying vote with the programme nor favouring members of the All Progressives Congress with the programme.
Osinbajo explained this in Ilorin, Kwara State when he visited the state to launch the programme at Ipata. He gave the explanation during a radio programme at a radio station in the town, the Sobi FM.
He said contrary to the critics that the government launched the programme close to election, the programme started in 2016 and fully took off after the National Assembly approve money for it about seven months ago
Osinbajo said the programme was for the benefit of the masses and petty traders and that so long as the people enjoy the benefit, it is out of place to complain about the timing.
He denied the allegation that the micro credit was given to only members of the APC, saying that beneficiaries are not considered on account of party affiliations but on merit.
“It is false that only members of the APC are considered for the money. Nobody even asks anybody about his or her party or try to know whether you are APC or PDP. Even those who belong to no party are beneficiaries,” he stated
The vice president said the government considered the petty traders for the programme because it is always difficult for them to access bank loan because of the belief that they would hardly refund.
He said though there was no collateral for the loan, refund may not be difficult with the design that a beneficiary who refunds would have a chance of getting something bigger the next time.
He explained that beneficiaries at the start are given N10, 000 while after refund they receive N15, 000 with the progression to continue up to N50, 000.
The government has targeted a total of two million petty traders across the states of the federation for the programme with a minimum of 30, 000 beneficiaries per state.
He said that the marketmoni version of the micro credit programme meant for artisans and marketers of higher status would commence with N50, 0000 for the beneficiaries and explained that the people could receive up to N300, 000 when they do not derail in refunding.
Osinbajo disclosed that the government would, by 2019, float a people’s money bank with branches in all the states for traders and artisans to access credit facilities.