By Bankole Adewale
Agege Local Government Area of Lagos State on Friday empowered another forty indigent residents, who are into private businesses with N100, 000 (One Hundred Thousand Naira) each, bringing the number of recipients of its monthly financial empowerment programme to over three hundred.
The empowerment scheme is an initiative of the Alhaji Ganiyu Egunjobi led-administration aimed at supporting petty business owners and artisans.
Speaking at the presentation of the cash gifts to the new beneficiaries at the Council secretariat, Egunjobi said Agege local government under his leadership prioritised petty businesses and is out to support the owners and ensure the enterprises enjoyed low mortality rate.
He said the industry was critical to the economic growth of the area and the social well-being of its inhabitants adding that the council would stop at nothing to improve residents’ lots.
“Since I took over the reins in July of 2017, the Council has made it a tradition to support selected indigent business operators every month. The beneficiaries of the scheme are generally Agege residents from various sectors of our economy including market women and men and artisans.
“The criteria to qualify for this monthly scheme are not rocket science. It is just to be a struggling business owner and resident of Agege. It is my hope that thousands of such people, who are yet to benefit from the scheme will one day enjoy it,” the council said.
Egunjobi counselled the new recipients urging them not to divert the fund particularly by expending it on mundane things but invest it wisely in their businesses.
“For those lucky to receive theirs today, I enjoin you to invest the money in your businesses and make wise choices. Please don’t expend it on Aso-ebi and other frivolities,” he pleaded.
The council chief went on to give account of his stewardship saying under his watch the council constructed fifteen roads, and blocks of classrooms with modern toilets in all the three public primary schools in the area just as it shared out uniforms, bags and customized exercise books to pupils among others.
He enjoined Agege business owners not to shirk their responsibilities in payment of levies to the council.
His word, “I enjoin business owners to recompense our good works by paying their organisations’ levies promptly. Paying your dues to government is part of the social responsibility of any organisation.
“If you must know, your businesses benefit from the infrastructure, security, education, health and social peace the government put in place. They also use our resources.
“The tax or levies you paid enable us to us to maintain the services that make businesses possible at all. So play your part.”