…as 5,000 shortlisted to benefit
By Mike Adeyemi
The Chairman, Ilorin West Market Traders Association, Alhaji Moshood Alaya, has alleged sharp practices in the disbursement of loan to traders from the $332m recovered from the loot stashed in Switzerland by the late former head of State, General Sani Abacha.
He made the allegation during a chat with Pilot Business in Ilorin, Kwara State on Tuesday, saying that politicians have hijacked the programme.
He said about 5,000 authentic traders from across markets in the local government had earlier been shortlisted to benefit from the loan disbursement.
“About 5, 000 traders from across markets in Ilorin West Local Government Area of the state, who applied for the loan two months ago in conformity with Federal Government’s directive have been selected to benefit.
“The credit facility is a non interest loan of N10, 000 each, which the traders are expected to invest into their small scale businesses. This will no doubt help stimulate the economy of the state.
“But, sadly, ever since we submitted interest forms with Access Bank, we have not heard anything about the loan. Rather, the news making the rounds is that some politicians have benefitted from the credit facility at the expense of traders.
He also alleged that three traders from the Oja-Oba market were also given the loan in deviance to rules guiding disbursement of the loan.
Alaya, however, appealed to the state government to ensure that genuine traders are direct beneficiaries of the loan.
“It is traders who can plough back the loan into the economy to have multiplier effects, just like the N100 million loan granted to traders in the state last year by the state government.” he noted
The association boss also urged the state government to increase credit facilities to traders in Ilorin West LG so as to boost their businesses.
“One market in Ilorin West Local Government is bigger and has more traders than three markets put together in another local government in the state,” he asserted.
The market leader however lauded the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki for facilitating an ultra-modern hospital at the Ita-Amo market, charging the state government to ensure infrastructural development of markets across the state.