Akwa Ibom state governor, Udom Emmanuel has flagged off the disbursement of N198, 800, 000 grant to women in the state to invest in businesses and agriculture.
Blueprint reports that the grant, which is targeted at 10, 970 women in the state, is first being carried out in three pilot local government areas; Oruk Anam, Ibesikpo Asutan, and Onna.
Speaking during the official flag-off of livelihood grants to Women Affinity Group (WAG) in Uyo on Friday, Emmanuel stated that the grant was succour to eradicate poverty in the state.
The governor, represented by his deputy, Mr. Mosses Ekpo, stated that the women had formed themselves into 477 affinity groups to which the money would be paid.
He noted that his administration has been on the forefront in empowering women and making them self-reliant thereby promoting shared prosperity in the society.
“Women’s economic empowerment is not alien to this administration. It has been our core principle to several women empowerment programmes so far executed across the three senatorial districts of the state.
“Akwa Ibom women have been significantly impacted through non-governmental organizations in collaboration with the state government.
“Today, we are disbursing a total of 198, 800, 000 naira only to 477 affinity groups in the first phase of the project. Before the end of my administration in May this year, we will disburse a further sum of 454, 400, 000 to 1500 women groups.
” We are to impact directly over 11,000 women. This is in demonstration of our commitment to the empowerment of Akwa Ibom women and community development,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Welfare, Dr. Ini Adiakpan has expressed delight in the implementation of the projects in the state.
She said the disbursement of the revolving grants will make funds available to women to enhance their businesses and stimulate rural development.
Adiakpan stated that before the end of the current administration, about 2.5 billion naira would be disbursed through Nigeria for Women Project to 4, 300 Women Affinity Groups as revolving grants.
She urged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the funds that would be given to them to improve their livelihood in their communities.