At least 1,500 additional ex- Niger Delta militants will be beneficiaries of single-digit interest loans offered by the Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL).
The training that was in continuation of a programme for NIRSAL loans which PAP commenced in November 2021 was held at designated centres in Delta, Rivers, Bayelsa, and Akwa Ibom states.
The Presidential Amnesty Programme (PAP) made this known on Sunday, according to the News Agency of Nigeria.
The interim administrator of PAP, Milland Dikio, in a statement signed by his media aide, Neotaobase Egbe on Sunday, urged the beneficiaries to use the loans to launch successful businesses.
The administrator cautioned the beneficiaries against misuse of the facility, adding that diverting the loan would create more hardships and further plunge the region into extreme poverty.
He noted that the training would help the beneficiaries grow their businesses and mitigate risks.
At the Yenagoa and Port Harcourt centres, Mr Dikio, who spoke through his special adviser on projects, Godwin Ekpo, asked the beneficiaries to form cooperatives and focus on agriculture.
“We have asked them to form themselves into cooperatives, look at the agriculture value chain, production; processing, packaging, and logistics, to see where they fit in,” he said.
“A lot of them have shown interest, and I am hoping that maybe, by tomorrow, they will form themselves into different clusters in the value chain of several products.”
NIRSAL, on its website, says it is a $500 million Non-Bank Financial Institution fully owned by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and created to redefine, dimension, measure, re-price and share agribusiness-related credit risks in Nigeria.