By Victoria Hanson, LAGOS
The Artisan and Transport Sector Track of the Survival Fund and Guarantee Off-take Scheme was launched in Lagos on Thursday, October 1, 2020.
Speaking at the launch, the Vice President of the Steering Committee of Survival Fund, Mrs. Ibukun Awosika, said the programme aimed to assist Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) across the 36 states and FCT.
“The Artisan and Transport support scheme was designed to provide 333,000 artisans and transport business operators with a N30,000 operation grant to reduce the effect of income loss during the Covid-19 pandemic and its resultant lockdown.
“The scheme aims to provide 9,009 beneficiaries in each of the 36 states of the federation and the FCT by leveraging duly registered and recognized associations and clusters of registered artisans and transport organizations/workers.
“Beneficiaries under artisans include: Tailors, bricklayers, hairstylists, printers, cart pushers, etc. registered with their respective trade associations and organised into regional, state and local government chapters.
“While transporters include: bus drivers, conductors, taxi- drivers, amongst others.
“We encourage you to open an account number so that the money would be paid directly into the beneficiary’s account as we will not be handing out cash,” she said.
Speaking, the Managing Director of the Bank of Industry, Mr Kayode Pitan, and a member of the steering committee, had this to say:
“Forty-five percent of those who are going to benefit from the scheme in each state will be women and there is also 5 percent reserved for those with special needs.
“The amount is N30,000 per individual, which will be given to the beneficiaries through the associations,” he said.
Pitan said that all associations must be duly registered with Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) as a requirement to be able to obtain the funds for their members.
“Each beneficiary also has to have a BVN number, but if you do not have one, you can still benefit through the leadership of the association registered with the CAC,” he said.
Prompt News recalls that President Muhammadu Buhari introduced the Economic Sustainability Plan on July 1, 2020 as part of measures to cushion the effects of COVID-19 pandemic especially on MSMEs.
The scheme will be implemented in three phases – First phase from October 1, 2020 – 10th October, 2020, covering FCT, Lagos, Ekiti, Kaduna, Borno, Kano, Bauchi, Anambra, Abia, Rivers, Plateau and Delta states.
The second phase which will commence on 19th October -31st October, 2020, covering Edo, Ogun, Ondo, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Enugu and Ebonyi states.
While the third phase is to commence on 9th November – November 21, 2020, covering Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Zamfara, Yobe , Sokoto, Nasarawa, Niger, Imo, Oyo, Osun, Jigawa, Gombe, and Benue states.