Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo has described former president Olusegun Obasanjo’s comment on TraderMoni as ignorant and mischievous. In a statement, Laolu Akande, senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity, said the former president has shown a complete misunderstanding of the programme initiated by the federal government to support petty traders.
In his state of the nation address tagged ‘Points for Concern and Action’, Obasanjo described the programme as “outrightly idiotic”, adding that there is a sinister motive behind it.
Akande said the vice-president does not personally distribute the money during his visits to the markets but creates awareness and assess the implementation of the programme. He also denied the claim that beneficiaries of the scheme are asked to submit their permanent voter cards (PVCs) before they can get the loan.
Akande further denied that the scheme has a political undertone, noting that the scheme, which has been approved by the national assembly and is budgeted for, is being actively implemented across all states of the federation and the FCT. He noted that beneficiaries of the TraderMoni scheme are petty traders at the bottom of the economic ladder, adding that the scheme also contributes significantly to the economy.
According to Akande, to label such people-friendly scheme as idiotic is not only an absurdity but also an affront to the sensibilities of these hard working Nigerians, who are the beneficiaries of the micro-credit scheme.