The Bank of Industry (BOI) has called on Gombe Sate government to urgently release its outstanding counterpart contribution of N250 million to the matching fund to enable it facilitate job creation in the state through funding of loan under the matching fund scheme. The Managing Director/CEO of the Bank, Rasheed Olaoluwa spoke in Gombe during the commissioning of the Bank’s branch in the state capital yesterday. He said the sum of N903.4 million was approved as loan for 171 projects; but only 55% of the approved loan amount could be funded under the Matching Fund Scheme because available matching fund was N500 million. He said: “Notwithstanding, BOI had disbursed N110 million to 16 enterprises in the state from its own resources” all of which had culminated in the creation of “1,277 direct and 623 indirect jobs, totalling 1,900 jobs created”. Gombe state government had in 2011 signed a N1 billion entrepreneurship development partnership with BOI in which both parties contributed N250 million each to create a pool of N500 million which was distributed as loans to prospective entrepreneurs in the state.

Governor Ibrahim Hassan Dankwambo on his part promised that the second tranche of N250 million would be made available to BOI “when government’s finances improve.” He said achievements obtained through the entrepreneurship development scheme include: “171 cooperative societies benefiting from the programme, creation of 1,190 direct jobs, creation of 562 indirect jobs and establishment of 171 enterprises in 24 product lines in agriculture and minerals sectors”.

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