From: Femi Oyelola, Kaduna
The Minister of Finance, Hajiya Zainab Ahmed has distributed N12 million worth of empowerment packages to 3,300 women across the 23 local government areas of Kaduna State.
Ahmed explained at the distribution ceremony in Kaduna on Saturday that, the empowerment programme was in collaboration with National Directorate of Employment (NDE), which trained the beneficiaries and Buhari-El-Rufai Support Team (BEST).
She further explained that the empowerment packages include grinding machines, cosmetology starter pack to women who were trained on cosmetics making, and cash to business women to expand their businesses.
She noted that women empowerment was key to uplifting the living standard of women, particularly in the northern part of the country who were wallowing in poverty.
According to her, a self-reliant skill, a little financial support and encouragement will go a long way in ensuring financial independence of women, particularly in rural areas who are usually left behind.
“Realising that our women are not benefiting from government support, I decided to encourage them to form cooperative societies and together with BEST we partnered with NDE to train them.
“Today we are giving them starter packs to help them roll-out their business and for those with little business we are giving them cash support to expand their business.
“This is our way of giving back to our society and put smiles to the faces of women who toils every day to take care of the family.”
She said that she would partner with the Minister of Women Affairs to extend the gesture to other women across the country.
The minister equally donated vehicles to the All Progressive Congress (APC) Senatorial and House of Representative candidates as well as the APC campaign organisation in the state.
According to her, the gesture is to help mobilise the people of the state for the reelection of President Muhammadu Buhari, Gov Nasir El-Rufai and all APC candidates contesting in the general election.
She called on women in the state to help mobilise their husbands, children and community members to ensure APC’s victory in the 2019 election for more dividend of democracy.
Also speaking, Gov El-Rufai thanked the minister and BEST for supporting Kaduna state women with source of livelihood to better their lives.
He described the minister’s gesture as the first in the history of Kaduna state, where a woman remembers her fellow women and takes step to empower them.
Aisha Buhari, who was represented by the wife of Nasarawa State Governor, Hajiya Mairo Al-makura also urged women of the state to give 100 support to APC and advised them against selling their votes.
Earlier, the Director General, NDE, Dr Nasir Ladan equally thanked the minister for her passion toward supporting the women of Kaduna state with N12 million empowerment package to live a quality life.
Ladan, who was represented by the North West Zonal Director, Malam Abubakar Nuhu, appealed to the beneficiaries to make the best use of the items.
Similarly, BEST Chairman, Gambo Kurfi said that the team would continue its village to village, house to house and door to door campaign to ensure the reelection of Buhari and El-Rufai.