Senator Gershom has empowered, assisted many constituents without funfair

Senator Gershom has empowered, assisted many constituents without funfair

Sen.-Gershom-Bassey-Cross-River-State
Sen.-Gershom-Bassey-Cross-River-State

BY: Nsa Gill

The Senator representing Cross River Southern senatorial district, Senator Gershom Bassey is one who has empowered many and attracted numerous programme of substantial benefits to his constituents without funfair.

The Director General of his Campaign team, Barr. Asuquo Ekpo Ada stated this in an interaction with newsmen at the weekend. He maintained that “the legislator is one who speaks for his people in other to attract infrastructure either from the Federal or the state government. He has empowered many constituent members within the Senatorial district without funfair”.

He disclosed that “Over 1,150 persons in Cross River state have benefited from the Federal Government’s empowerment programmes facilitated by the Senator representing the State’s South Senatorial district, Chief Gershom Bassey”.

His words, “Gershom’s concern is to be able to attract those benefits from the Federal or state for his Constituents. That is why we don't make noise about these monies that have been given to the people. We are giving street lights in so many areas in the state capital. We identify so many dark areas. Our real concept of empowerment is on what we are doing that goes to individual beneficiaries. Our core mandate is to attract government benefits and infrastructure to our people.”

“The money people are receiving is actually their own money- The loans; there are loans, grants etc. The CBN funds for Agri-Business/Small and Medium Enterprise Investment Scheme give up to N10 million in loan which you are to repay in seven years. You have one year moratorium and you pay back within 6 years with a very low interest rate”.

“What the Senator do for you to access that money as an individual is to certain amount of money expected as a percentage deposit from beneficiaries. With that payment he helps facilitate access and collects the forms for beneficiaries.

“After paying upfront, in addition, he pays the consultant who will carry out the training for the applicants. So as you get the money, it becomes useful to you. When I visited one of the training sessions I discovered that they were very serious minded people. For the two weeks, none of them missed their classes. They were 150 of them trained for the N10 million CBN loan. Presently they have got their business plans and certificate of participation. This is what Senator Gershom Baaaey stands for. He does not want the syndrome of our young men and women roaming the streets. Or some of them only waking up in the morning to move from house to another with different sympathetic stories to seek for help”.

“There are other monies in form of grants of N475 000 as well. There are some people you give N475, 000, it will not drive their kind of business but there are certain categories of people that can drive theirs with this amount and it makes meaning to their lives. These are the kind of approach and perspectives in form of empowerment that the Senator has been adopting- Giving people sustainable form of empowerment.”

“We also patronize different support groups with tricycles. Recently we empower individuals with cash for investments while support group get tricycle. They tricycle is like a seed of unity for the group. We are also trying to teach them how to build themselves as a group. If you are a group and you can take care of a bike, then it means you can take care of your business. This is the kind of thing we are teaching people. It was lacking in our people over the years. We are keeping records. Any group that does not do well, of course will not benefit subsequently but to those who show seriousness, we shall add something to it.”

“The significance is to show people that the only way to grow your business is to plan. So far, we have identified so many groups across the Seven LGAs in the southern senatorial district: Calabar South, Calabar municipality, Bakassi, Akpabuyo, Odukpani , Akamkpa and Biase. The value of the empowerment runs into millions of Naira. We have so many items including the mini buses, Vulcanizing machine, tricycles, sewing machines etc”.

He said so far, “Over 800 persons have benefitted from Senator Gershom Baaaey grants while the CBN assisted programme has over 150 who have been trained and they have received their certificate of participation and will soon receive alerts. The training is in phases. We are entering into the second phase with 200 persons. It is a continuous training programme and for the grant, it is still on-going as well”.

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