The Federal Government has disbursed N5 million as soft loans to 500 petty traders in Jigawa.

The Office of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE) in Dutse disbursed the loans on Wednesday, on behalf of the the Federal Government.

The NDE Coordinator in the state, Malam Abubakar Muhammad, told NAN that the state government selected the beneficiaries, who were comprised of males and females.

Muhammad explained that the soft loans were meant to boost the businesses of the beneficiaries.

“The gesture was aimed at supporting the traders to enhance their small scale businesses, improve their living standards, as well as enhance self reliance among the people of the state.

“It was also aimed at reducing unemployment and restiveness among youths and women in the state.

“This will also empower women to contribute meaningfully to the economic growth of their families, communities, the state, in particular, and the nation, in general,” Muhammad explained.

In his remarks, Alhaji Muhammad Mujaddadi, the Special Assistant to the Gov. Muhammad Badaru Abubakar on Economic Empowerment, pointed out that the beneficiaries came from 30 constituencies in the state.

Mujaddadi urged the beneficiaries to make good use of the funds so as to enhance their trades.

One of the beneficiaries, Mr Sani Mustapha, a cell phone dealer, commended the gesture, promising to use the loan judiciously.