Essikado(W/R), Nov. 15, GNA-The National Democratic Congress (NDC) Parliamentary Candidate for Essikado-Ketan constituency, Professor Grace Ayensu-Danquah has rolled out a micro-finance credit scheme for traders in the Constituency as part of actions to empower women.
Currently, 120 traders in eight communities had benefitted from the Obatanpa credit scheme, which is in its pilot phase.
Over time, the scheme would benefit more than 25,000 women engaged in petty trading to grow their businesses.
The beneficiary communities are Kansaworodo, Essipong, Kojokrom, Essikado and Mpinstin.
The rest are Sofokrom,Nchaban Nkwanta and Ntankorful.
Prof. Ayensu-Danquah, in an interview with the GNA, said 2020 was a difficult year for businesses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which forced many traders out of business.
She said women must be empowered to be self-sufficient and to contribute meaningfully to development in society.
Prof. Ayensu-Danquah said she engaged a money lending institution to provide micro loans to the traders.
As part of the pilot project, she said a start-up capital would be given to the traders in line with their businesses.
The Parliamentary Candidate said she would bear 60 per cent of the interest rate for a start but planned to make the package interest free in the coming months.
There are plans to increase the number of beneficiaries to alleviate poverty and boost the economic status of women in the constituency.
Prof. Ayensu-Danquah said the credit scheme was opened to all traders in the constituency irrespective of their political affiliations.
She expressed the hope of the project revolutionizing small scale businesses to ensure the well-being of women in the constituency.
The NDC Parliamentary Candidate appealed to women in the Essikado-Ketan constituency to vote for her and the NDC on December 7 to utilize the common fund to initiate more projects for them.
Speaking to the GNA at Kojokrom, some of the market women and traders expressed gratitude to Prof. Ayensu-Danquah for making the welfare of women a priority and pledged their support for her.