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21 Feb 2018

Gov. Ben Ayade announces N500m interest free loan for Cross River LG workers

Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State has announced a N500 million interest free loan for local government workers in the state to enable them go into peasant farming.

Prof. Ayade, who announced this in his office on Tuesday when thousands of local government workers paid him a solidarity visit said, “the loan was to assist Local Government workers who wish to go into farming to do so.”

He said his government would work with officials of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) to facilitate access to the loan.

Ayade who was awarded the ‘Award of Excellent Performance in Governance’ by the national President of NULGE, Comrade Ibrahim Khaleel in his office said salaries were not enough and that there must be opportunity for people to have another source of income.

The governor, who said the loan was interest-free, pointed out that being workers at the grassroots level, they needed loans to enhance the agricultural push of the state government, explaining that with the gesture of government, the workers would find some comfort in the rural areas.

Ayade, who also gave the union N10 million for its magazine, “Grassroots mirror” said local government workers were dear to him, hence his insistence that they should be paid ahead of other government workers.

“For those local government workers who want to go into farming, I have set aside N500 million as interest free loan so as to ensure that your stay in the local government is not in vain. I will work with your union leaders to ensure that any serious person accesses the money,” the governor said.

Earlier, the national president of NULGE, Comrade Ibrahim Khaleel had told the governor that he was in the state to join his colleagues to appeal to the governor to contest the 2019 election, noting that the award that was presented to him was in view of his concern for the local government workers.

He said the national leadership of NULGE, “after a thorough investigation,” found that Ayade was “a promise keeper” and had been working to ensure that local government workers in the state were treated with respect.

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