The Chairman, Lagos State Microfinance Institution (LASMI), Mr. Sikiru Alabi-Macfoy, says the outfit has so far given out N5 billion as loans to the active poor in the state.
Speaking to News Agency of Nigeria, Alabi-Macfoy, said the sum was disbursed in collaboration with 8 microfinance banks (MFBs).
He said the first phase of the initiative was a pool fund of N1.4bn disbursed through 5 MFBs.
â€œLASMI donated more than N700 million while the 5 MFBs jointly contributed more than N700 million. The second phase, which is N3.6bn, is currently being implemented through 8 MFBs.
â€œWe hope that by the time the entire funds would have been disbursed, the state government and the 8 MFBs would have empowered a greater percentage of the active poor in the state.â€
The banks are Integrated MFB, Gapbridge MFB, Lasu MFB, MIC MFB, Ojokoro MFB, GS MFB, Townserve MFB and Infinity MFB.
The LASMI boss said the programme was to ensure that the active poor in the state had access to loans with less stringent conditions.
He said government was aware that there were many persons in the state with good business proposals but had no collateral to approach commercial banks for loans.
Alabi-Macfoy advised beneficiaries to utilize the loans efficiently to enable others benefit from the poverty alleviation scheme as efficient utilisation of the loans would boost trade and employment opportunities in the country.