The Vihiga County Trade Enterprise Fund has released the second phase of Sh.25million toward various registered groups and individuals in a bid to boost small-scale business activities in the county.
Area Governor Dr. Wilber Ottichilo presided over disbursement of the Trade Enterprise Fund cheques to the beneficiaries in an event held at Mulukhoro village in Emuhaya Sub County on Wednesday.
Ottichilo emphasize on the need for timely repayment of the revolving fund when he addressed representatives of the beneficiaries from various groups and individuals.
“We encourage beneficiaries to utilize the funds in viable, profitable and sustainable business activities to enable others access the affordable loans,” said Ottichilo who decried slow pace of repayment of the first phase of Sh33 million loan disbursed in 2019.
The governor revealed plans by his government through the trade department that will see traders attend both local and international trade fair and exhibitions.
“The objective is to capacity build our traders who are in small-scale business enterprises, thus enable them grow big,” remarked Ottichilo.
He assured traders in the county that his administration had put in place proper governance structures for monitoring the Trade and Enterprise Fund.
“When we took over power, there were no proper structures to guide the Trade and Enterprise Fund. However, my administration has now rectified the problem,” he disclosed.
In addition, the governor reminded traders across the county to strictly adhere to Ministry of Health containment measures in order to curb further spread of
the novel Covid-19 pandemic in the area.
The governor used the occasion to officially open the County Trade and Enterprise Fund Board offices located in Emuhaya Sub County.
He also commissioned an official vehicle that will be used by the board members as they carry out daily activities.
Speaking at the same function, Deputy Governor Dr. Patrick Saisi noted besides improving sources of livelihoods, the Trade Enterprise Fund was also meant to cushion youth and women against being misused by politicians.
Dr. Saisi decried the culture of cash handouts by politicians, blaming the same for what he termed as increased level of laziness and political hooliganism among the local youth.
“Through such funds the county government offers alternative, accessible and affordable sources for start-up capital to the youth and women in order protect them from being easy targets for politicians,” he said.
Also present at the event were the county Executive for Trade Elvuna Keseko, Chief Officer for Trade Gilbert Vidija, County Director of Administration Harrison Matevwa, various Sub County and Ward administrators and the Fund’s Board members.
By Maurice Aluda