The Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Hajiya Aisha Jummai Alhassan, who made this known during a press briefing, said the funds were already with the Bank of Industry for onward distribution to eight pilot states.
She said the Buhari administration is committed to reducing the effect of the recession and economically empower Nigerians so as to improve their standard of living
Hajiya Aisha added that for the month of *October, N1.6 billion* will be taken out of the *N3.9 billion* to fund the National Women Empowerment Fund programme while the remaining amount will be used for the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme (GEEP).
“The GEEP programme is one of the federal government’s social investment programme targeted at providing micro finance as loans to young men and women from all states of the federation at liberal conditions without any collateral.
“The federal government recognises the difficulties in securing business loans from commercial banks, therefore, measures for monitoring and evaluation of disbursements, usage and recovery have been put in place so that beneficiaries can repay the loan in six months and others can benefit from the revolving scheme.
“The repayment schedules are easier and less stringent than those of conventional banking loans, so we are sure that the country will witness increased economic activities with the desired multiple effects and subsequent boost in the economy,” she said.
She added that the eight pilot states are *Abia,Akwa Ibom, Osun, Nasarawa, Jigawa, Adamawa, Borno and Yobe.*
The National Women Empowerment Fund Programme which will be rolled out at the same time as the GEEP will *target 1000 women with each state receiving a minimum of N200 million.*
She called on all eligible women to *register with cooperative societies* to have access to the funds.