Wife of Osun State governor Mrs. Kafayat Oyetola has hailed Olori Janet Afolabi, a CNN award winning journalist and Queen of Apomu kingdom, for supporting Apomu market women with interest free loans through Apomu Women Cooperative.
It was launched last Friday at the Palace Hall, Apomu.
She said: “I appreciate Olori Afolabi for her efforts at ensuring the take-off of this project. I have no doubt that it will help lift many women and homes out of poverty and enhance the standard of living in their homes. I urge other communities, which may not have this type of economic development mechanism, to emulate Apomu women by floating their cooperatives.”
Olori Afolabi said she initiated the project because ”after COVID-19 lockdown, many women were unable to resume their trading. Many of them had spent their capital. A lot of them tried to borrow money from relations, families, friends and neighbours, but it was very difficult. To help these women start again, I came up with Apomu Women Cooperative as my flagship empowerment project to give interest free loans to market women, to be paid back over five months.”
The women were randomly selected, shortlisted and interviewed by experts from LEAD Transformation Initiative. The first batch of the beneficiaries was announced at the event.
Mrs. Oyetola, the guest of honour, said she was “delighted to have attended the unveiling of Apomu Women Cooperative. The importance of women cooperative at this period cannot be overemphasised.”
She was accompanied to the event by a large entourage. Some of them were the deputy governor’s wife, commissioner for Women Affairs, wife of Secretary to the State Government, wife of commissioner for Finance, wife of APC state chairman, wife of special adviser on Local Government, wife of special adviser on Health and wife of special adviser on Education.
Others who attended the event were Ayo Omidiran, former House of Representatives member, majority leader, Osun State House of Assembly, chairmen of Irewole, Isokan and Irewole North East LCDA, Mr. and Mrs. Femi and Kemi Titilayo, founder and directors of LEAD Transformation Initiative.The event had over 500 women in attendance.