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we’ll not steal public funds like past govts – Osinbajo

Valentine Chinyem

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VICE President Yemi Osinbajo has pledged that the All Progressives Congress (APC) administration will not steal public money and keep it in private accounts for personal use like previous administrations.

He added that the APC administration’s resolve informed the setting up of Tradermoni scheme to empower petty traders.

Osinbajo, who spoke at the palace of Ovie of Ughelli Kingdom, Ughelli North Local Government Area, Delta State, said the APC administration’s determination was to ensure that the country grows despite earning 60 per cent of less than what the previous government earned.

He noted that yet, the administration spent more on building infrastructure more than what past governments had ever done.

The vice president said: “We are here for the Tradermoni Scheme and we are just beginning enumeration and we will start disbursement by January. We will be giving up to 30,000 market women. In the second phase, more market women will be added.

“The petty traders are the largest number, but nobody is ready to give them loans because the people are not sure whether they would pay back, but Mr. president had decided that as many traders as possible in Nigeria should be given this money.

“The first set of 10,000 people will be N10,000,000. Then, as they pay back, the amount will be increased until they give up to N100,000 to each trader. This initiative came from President Muhammadu Buhari’s past experience while he was Chairman, Kastina Foundation.

“Then, he was giving out these small loans as well, and now, he has decided to extend the gesture to the national level. Today, it’s just enumeration of the market women; by January, we will come back and disburse directly to the market women.”

Osinbajo added: “President Buhari is also responsible for the feeding of school children. In Delta State, the feeding of school children is about 400,000 children.

“The second thing we are doing here in Delta State is what we call N-Power Scheme, which is graduate empowerment programe and we currently have about 18,000 N’Power graduates in Delta State.

“We are also on market money scheme, which is different from the trader market scheme. Over 5,000 beneficiaries have received from this scheme. The determination of the Federal Government is to ensure we build the country by empowering young people, who would create more opportunities for others to strive.

“These market women have been lamenting since previous government that they have not been seeing anything from government. So, this present government decided to build this country; but not steal public funds and put into private accounts.

“The truth is that we are earning today 60 per cent less than what the previous government earned. Yet, we are spending more on building infrastructures more than what other governments had ever done in the history of Nigeria.

“We have spent over N6.7 trillion on infrastructure on East-West road, the Second Niger Bridge, the railway and others. There is no way we can build a country without infrastructure.

“The question we will ask the previous government is what did they do with the money, if today we are still building infrastructure, which we ought to have done before?

“That is why we said we are running honest government, where the resources of the people are used for the people. This is our determination and that of President Buhari.”

Delta State APC governorship candidate Chief Great Ovedje Ogboru also hailed the Tradermoni scheme, saying it was a welcome development for Deltans.

Ogboru, who spoke at Osubi Airport, Okpe Local Government Area during Osinbajo’s visit to Delta, said the N10,000 to N30,000 initiative to market women across the country would go a long way to solving some of their problems, if such money are invested in some petty trades.

Ogboru said the gesture would benefit a lot of market women.

He said: “I personally like it and I believed that in the next few years, when we strengthen the initiative, you will see that it will lead to a better economy.”

On the reception accorded the vice president at the airport, Ogboru said it showed Buhari’s acceptability by the people of Delta State and their belief that the administration is doing very well.

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