Agric-Business Development: SMEDAN empowers Ogun Cooperative Societies - NATIONAL TRUMPET


Saturday, October 16, 2021

Agric-Business Development: SMEDAN empowers Ogun Cooperative Societies

In view of promoting Agriculture in the society, the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), has empowered not less than sixteen Cooperative societies in Ogun state with training and cash support.

The event, held at the Ogun State Tech Hub in Abeokuta between 11th to 16th of October, 2021 was attended by different cooperative societies within the state, today (Saturday).

At the event was the senior special assistant to the governor on Agriculture, Dr. Angel Adelaja-Kuye; Hon Tokunbo Oshin, SMEDAN South West board-member; Ogun State SMEDAN manager Dr. Bunmi Kole Dawodu, who was represented by Mr. Biodun Awoliyi; Mys Faniyan; among others.

In his speech, Hon. Tokunbo Oshin said SMEDAN is charged with nurturing, promoting and facilitating the development programmes and projects in the MSMEs sub-sector of the Nigerian economy, reason for organizing the training to enlighten people.

“SMEDAN’s mandate as contained in the enabling Act includes the following, viz: Initiating and articulating policy ideas for small and medium enterprises growth and development; Promoting and facilitating development programmes, instruments and support services to accelerate the development and modernization of MSMEs operations;   Serving as a vanguard for rural industrialization, poverty reduction, job creation and enhanced livelihoods; Linking MSMEs to internal and external sources of finance, appropriate technology and technical skills as well as large enterprises.

“Globally, MSMEs are recognized as engines of socio-economic transformation, as has become well established in both developing and developed economies. They offer opportunities to drive jobs and wealth creation as well as income re-distribution within society.

“These further unveil them as a distinctive mainstay of the economy that requires befitting attention. This relevance of the sub-sector is probably better driven home by the following emergent facts from the NBS-SMEDAN National Survey of MSMEs, 2017,which reported an estimated 41,543,028 MSMEs in Nigeria, contributing 49.78% to national Gross Domestic Product (GDP), employing  76.5% of the workforce (or about  59.6 million persons)  and accounting for 7.64 % of exports. The expectation of SMEDAN is to drive more output from the sub-sector with more careful attention to resources deployment and proper management.”

He therefore urged the beneficiaries to make use of the money giving to them, in order to turns things better for the improvement of Nigeria’s economy.

“Again, let me express our appreciation for your resilience during this training programme. Please be informed that our officers will be visiting you, at your business locations, to offer extension services with a view to firming your businesses unto maturity and prosperity”, Hon Oshin concluded.

Speaking with journalists on behalf of Dr. Kole Dawodu, Mr. Awoliyi said the programme which started on Monday is to support cooperative societies in the clusters who are into farming, for them to enjoy the dividends of democracy.

He said the agency believes that the money, if given to them will help grow their agricultural businesses, which was affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

One of the beneficiaries, Pastor Jayesinmi Olajide while appreciating the agency, said he was very happy that the federal government could come up with the idea of helping the farmers, saying the five days training has been a wonderful one to attend.

He therefore urged other beneficiaries to make use of the money given to them well, so as to have good profits from it.

“It’s not only about the money, but for the knowledge impacted on us during the seminar days, that’s more than the money itself. They’d impacted so much in us, and we gained a lot on how we can turn Agriculture to Agric-Business.”

Also, the senior special assistant to the Ogun state governor on Agriculture, Dr. Angel Adelaja-Kuye said the programme will boost the relationship between the cooperatives and SMEDAN, and also open door of opportunities for them from the agency.

She therefore urged the beneficiaries to use the money given to them very judiciously and make sure the money is seen as a seed to sow for prosperity.

“They are farmers, they should know that when they invest in their agric-businesses, they would see a lot of returns. I know that the hardwork and commitment they put in making sure they attend this training, they would be able to turn things around better for themselves.” Kuye concluded.

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