BoI, Ooni seal N1bn MoU to empower 5,000 youths, women in Ife
One year on, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, has stepped up efforts to better the live and wellbeing of his people.
He has attracted the Bank of Industry (BoI) into sealing a new deal worth N1bn for the empowerment of youths and women of the area.
While the Ooni signed for the House of Oduduwa, the Acting Managing Director of the BoI, Waheed Olagunju, signed for the financial institution
Olagunju explained that the initiative was aimed at reducing youth unemployment in Ile-Ife communities.
Available details of the loan scheme show that the MoU will facilitate the provision of N1 billion loan at an interest rate of 7.5 per cent to the youths.
BoI said a substantial part of the loan will be disbursed to women, youth and businesses that show high sustainability.
Olagunju explained further that “We have been partnering with multinational and corporate companies, but today we are collaborating with traditional rulers.
“These are people who have access to the grass root.
“Partnering with them is a way of democratising entrepreneurship.
“We identify areas in which communities have comparative advantages and invest in them.
“The beneficiaries will be selected using the world best practices.
“For this edition, about 15 to 20 per cent of them will be those who deal in local products.
“We are working with the entrepreneurship centre of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife.
“Applications are expected to be submitted and a joint committee of BoI team, the Oduduwa House and OAU team would access it.
“They are to be monitored by members of the committee and elders, especially the traditional rulers.
“We estimate that about 5,000 youths will benefit from this.”
On his part, the Ooni emphasized the need to get youths empowered, saying that was necessary for the nation’s continuous growth.
He subsequently challenged other monarchs across the country to be dedicated to developing youths in their communities.