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LAPO empowers clients with N42.4bn in H1 2014

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LAPO Microfinance Bank Limited has disbursed the sum of N42.4bn to micro entrepreneurs and rural farmers in first half of 2014.

The mid-year performance represents 61.87% growth over the sum of N26, 183,236,002 disbursed to clients during the same period in 2013.

Analysis shows that owners of micro enterprises received N42.1bn while rural agriculture was boosted with N287.5m.

Regional disbursement analysis indicates that South-West clients got the highest loan value of N21.9bn followed by South-South with N10.2bn while North-Central region received N4.9bn. Similarly, South-Eastern clients got N3.8 billion while North-West trailed with a disbursement of N1.5bn.

According to Godwin Ehigiamusoe, managing director, financial empowerment of micro-entrepreneurs, is crucial for Nigeria’s sustainable economic growth and development.

He stress that creating access to affordable credit and savings opportunities for the poor is a veritable poverty reduction strategy.

While reviewing the bank’s performance, Ehigiamusoe noted that clients of LAPO also benefited from enterprise development training, health and social empowerment services, adding that the bank has extended scholarship scheme to university students.

On the other hand, LAPO Microfinance Bank Limited targets 300 children of its clients in the 2014/2015 qualifying scholarship exam in 15 regions across the nation. 

As part of her corporate social responsibility, LAPO initiated the scholarship scheme in recognition of the fact that education is an instrument of economic empowerment and national development. It ensures a brighter, successful and fulfilled life for today’s children.

From inception, the qualifying examination is used every academic year by the LAPO Scholarship Board as a fair and balanced methodology of selecting numerous clients children across our 15 regions nationwide.

Osayi Itohan, manager, corporate affairs and secretary, LAPO Scholarship board, explained that the criteria for selecting the children is through screening of their client’s children and selecting the best among them.

“The ballot will enable us get the client children we can fund for the particular year and for this year we are targeting 300 children, across our regions and this will be added to the current beneficiaries we have,” she said. 

The process is aimed at secondary category as the Board will make use of the JAMB scores for university qualification.

This year, 1,555 secondary school students of LAPO clients from a total of 347 branches are writing the qualifying examination.  The brightest and most intelligent students will be selected based on merit.

According to Ehigiamusoe, LAPO instituted the scholarship scheme in 2007 with the cash prize of 10,000 US dollars that came with its Grameen Foundation Award for Excellence in Microfinance in 2006.

He expressed concern that students usually drop out of school especially at the secondary school level due to poverty, adding that the need for continuity in the beneficiaries’ educational advancement necessitated the scheme’s extension to the university level.

The cumulative number of beneficiaries under the LAPO Scholarship Scheme as at 2013 is 1,402 for secondary school students and 40 for University education, with over N65m disbursed so far to the beneficiaries.

Lilian Egbuna, one of the customers, was excited that her child was selected and she said, “I feel very great. I pray for LAPO that the good God will continue to prosper it and the managing director.”

Article Credit: Businessdayonline

Updated 4 Years ago

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Tags:     LAPO Microfinance Bank Limited     Godwin Ehigiamusoe     Osayi Itohan