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LAPO unveils medium-term growth plans

Moses Nosike
Life Above Poverty Organisation (LAPO) has reeled out its medium term project plans, which include reaching out to one million clients in few years to come.

(R-L) Chief Executive officer, Zain Nigeria, Alain Sainte-Marie; Chairman, Senate Committee on Communication, Senator Sylvester Anyanwu; Director of Regulatory and Government Affairs, Zain Nigeria, Osondu Nwokoro; and Regulatory & Government Affairs Team Member, Uchenna Orji, during the visit of Zain’s CEO to the Senate Committee on Communication recently.

Part of the project plans is to establish a large microfinance bank with liquidity flow, set up rural healthcare facilities that would promote health and alleviate poverty in the land. “These we expect to accomplish within three years’, according to the Executive Director, Godwin Ehigiamusoe.

The organisation intends to achieve these through collaboration with both local and international organisations. Meanwhile, in 2009, the company disbursed a total loan of N14.7 billion to its client, which is further broken down to N13.2 billion regular loan and N72.8 million agricultural loan, etc.

Speaking at a recent annual media interactive session in Lagos, Ehigiamusoe, explained that the organisation has adopted a two-phased strategy, which consists of institutional strengthening and expansion phases in order to hasten up its operations.

According to him, the institutional strengthening phase is designed to enhance the organsiation’s financial management and control measures, staff productivity and service delivery capacity, with special attention to branch automation nationwide through the application of management information system software.

He added that company’s operational and financial self-sufficiency performance is estimated at 122 percent and 110 percent respectively. “The organisation currently has a client base of  243.055 and 226 branch network across the 21 states of the federation including Abuja as at December 2009″.

These states have been sub-divided into 54 areas and 11 regions for administrative and operational convenience. This  is in line with the company’s objective of reaching one million clients with its innovative microfinance and empowerment services by 2011.

LAPO’s major target since inception is to address the problem of economic powerlessness of its clients who comprise low income earners through the provision of a wide range credit facilities, business loan, asset loan, farming loan, festival business loans, credit-for-share loans etc.

The Executive Director of LAPO, Godwin Ehigiamusoe, reiterated that the more informed avenue to deal with poverty and promote economic growth and development is to empower SMEs, low income earners, farmers etc. both rural and urban.

“LAPO conceives poverty as an octopus with several tentacles of causes and manifestations, such as material deprivation, poor health, social exclusion and injustice.”


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