Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos state says the 2019 governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, will sustain his policies if voted in as the governor.
The Lagos state governor made this comment on Monday while presenting cheques to another batch of over 2,000 beneficiaries of the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) loan programme at the LTV Blue Roof, Ikeja.
While charging the beneficiaries to use the funds to grow their businesses and pay back as and when due, Ambode expressed optimism about the sustainability of the scheme, saying it was instructive that Sanwo-Olu has already expressed commitment to the initiative.
Ambode said the initiative was meeting his objectives of creating jobs and contributing to the growth of the economy, noting that it is in addition to the over 10,000 beneficiaries who have received more than N7billion and have created over 25,000 new jobs in the last three years.
The governor expressed fulfillment that the initiative, which is a brainchild of his administration, has positively impacted many Lagosians and help to scale up entrepreneurship with many businesses now thriving.
His words: “Today is a historic day. It is one of those days that we have this fulfilment that we tried our hands on something that was never done before and years after, we are able to see the result and I just want to say a big thank you to all of you that have accepted to be partners in this programme and to just congratulate ourselves that a day like this can come in Lagos State.
“I am particularly delighted to be here today to see for myself the manifestation of a small dream we had at the inception of this government and the little seed we have sown in the lives and businesses of Lagosians. The Employment Trust Fund was a promise we made to Lagosians in 2015 and today, I am happy to see the faces of the people whose lives and aspirations have been positively impacted by this programme,” Ambode said.
Speaking further, Ambode said: “A very big validation of this programme we have embarked upon comes from the over 25,000 new direct jobs created directly by these businesses in our State. This does not include the multiplier effect of those businesses on the Lagos economy and the indirect jobs created.
“Apart from the jobs being created, I am especially pleased to see testimonials from some of our beneficiaries. I watched the video of Ibrahim Shuaib; a final year student of Dentistry at the Lagos State University Medical School. With a loan of N250,000, Ibrahim has not only grown his dry-cleaning business, employing over 20 people but also started another business which his sister runs.
“I also read about Femi Oyedipe, whose chocolate production business, Loshes Chocolate, can now produce ten times more than before, employing more Lagosians as staff. Apart from employing more people, Loshes Chocolate makes it products from cocoa beans sourced from Ondo State, creating value for farmers outside Lagos. This is a very good example of the inter-state economic partnership Nigeria needs to grow its economy,” he said.