Abia State government has launched entrepreneurship support for young Abians with innovative ideas but lack start-up funds. The programme is aimed at raising at least 24 entrepreneurs within the next two years, with one winner emerging every month for the next two years.
The state government will commit a maximum of N1 million on a winning proposal, each month.
It has always been our dream to approach empowerment from a different perspective rather than the traditional means of giving tricycles (Keke Napep) to graduates, as empowerment, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu, stated.
“We want to support ideas because it is what rules the world and I know there are many young Abians with brilliant ideas that we can support, as long as they meet our criteria”.
Governor Ikpeazu , who was represented, by Anthony Agbazuere, his chief of staff, at the presentation of funds to Chukwudike Okoroafor, from Umunneochi local government area, urged the state commissioner for information, to set up an appropriate platform for those with good entrepreneurial ideas, within the budget of the programme, to participate in a monthly competition with the best emerging as winner.
John Okiyi Kalu, the information commissioner, explained that a team made up of the chief of staff, commissioner for science and technology and director-general, Broadcasting Corporation of Abia (BCA), would select the winners, every month.
He called on young Abians resident in the state to submit their proposals to his office in sealed envelopes for consideration.
“While the first winner emerged from the agric sector, the programme is open to all areas of entrepreneurship, as long as the proposal can be funded within the monthly N1 million limit.
“All you need to qualify is to be a young Abian that is resident in the state and have good ideas that can be supported, to yield good results. The start-up grant is non-refundable, but we have a monitoring team that includes the relevant local government chairman that will ensure that the money is used for the stated purpose,” he said.