The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) in partnership  with the  Nigerian Army Officers Wives Association (NAOWA) on Tuesday started a two-day training  on capacity building for NAOWA members.

During the  programme tagged: Institutional support for NAOWA  which was holding  at the Military Cantonment, Ojo, Lagos State, SMEDAN promised to give  grants to NAOWA  members to start their own businesses.

The Director-General (D-G) SMEDAN, Mr Olawale Fasanya, while speaking on the purpose of the workshop said that the training was designed to enhance the capacity of NAOWA members in the state.

“The capacity building workshop is aimed  at forging a formidable collaboration that will make a significant impact on the welfare and well-being of members.

“It is to empower wives of our gallant officers both standing and fallen heroes, especially, those at the lowest rung of the ladder.”

He said that the programme would strengthen the capacity and sharpened the skills of members as regards to how they could  manage and run their businesses.

“We will help members grow their businesess and those who are not doing anything, we will assist them in starting a business.

“The programme is not only on capacity building, at the end, the wives of the officers will be given some grants to enable them manage their businesses well.

“The training will help create jobs and reduce poverty among our officers’ wives.”

Fasanya was represented by Dr. Friday Okpara, the Director in charge of Partnership and Coordination of the agency.

The National President of NAOWA, Mrs Salamatu Yahaya, in her address urged her members to see the empowerment as a leverage to carve out a niche to becoming  successful entrepreneurs and  inspirational business women to others.

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She said, ” It is a fact that when you empower a woman, you have empowered the whole family.

“The programme is coming at the right time given the challenging situation in our dear country, it will help curb poverty.

“Having appropriate business skills will raise our standard of living and productivity.”

Yahaya was represented by the Acting Chairperson, 81 Division, Lagos State, Mrs Laraban Ben-Onyeuko.

She thanked the D-G of SMEDAN for considering her members worthy beneficiaries of SMEDAN’s Institutional Support Programme for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).

In an interview with Onyeuko, she said the programme would assist women in the barracks to be comfortable.

“The training will teach our women how to do businesses and how to improve on them.

“Women are the front burner of every household, we must be doing something to support our husbands.

“We will be empowered with accounting skill and how to turn our one kobo to one naira.”

According to her, in the next few years, women in the barracks will become  millionaires.(NAN)

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