The Lagos State Government says it will start disbursing N6.25bn as loan to interested unemployed youths in the state for small-scale businesses by September.
The Lagos State Commissioner for Wealth Creation, Mr. Babatunde Durosinmi-Etti, disclosed this during an awareness programme on the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund, organised by the Office of Civic Engagement.
Mr. Durosinmi-Etti said, the fund is part of the total of N25bn set aside to assist unemployed Lagosians to create wealth by setting up businesses of their own, stating that the fund was for everybody, including artisans and traders.
“Lagos has a lot of unemployed youths, and that is why this ministry was set up to tackle the problem. Governor Akinwunmi Ambode has directed that the fund should be made accessible to everybody.
“Before the end of September, the fund will be available to those who apply for it. Interested individuals and groups should organise themselves to make the fund easily accessible.”
The government, however, warned beneficiaries to properly apply and follow instructions, adding that any mistake that would be seen as an attempt to get the government to pay any individual twice could lead to a jail term of two years.
The Commissioner for Justice and Attorney-General, Mr. Adeniji Kazeem, represented by Mrs. Tola Akinsanya, warned that anybody who presents fake names or addresses would be made to face the law.
He also said that anybody who also uses the loan for other purposes like wedding or any frivolous event would also be dealt with.
The Special Adviser to the Governor, Office of Civic Engagement, Mr. Kehinde Joseph, said the programme was to sensitize the state residents to the fund and how to access it, adding that the government is convinced that the fund will allow more people participate in the economic growth of the state.