Presidential Empowerment Initiative Fund (PEIF) National Patron Chanda Kabwe has urged physically and psychosocially challenged youths to innovate projects that will contribute national development.
Mr Kabwe says for a long time people with disabilities, marketers and vendors had been overlooked by successive governments because they are from the informal sector and cannot access banks loans and empowerment funds.
He said however the Patriotic Front (PF) government wants to boast the small businesses of Zambians in markets and individuals regardless of their physical nature so that they can graduate to small Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
Mr Kabwe who is also Kitwe District Commissioner said for the first time the President Lungu has extended the empowerment to persons with disabilities because he considers everyone as his children.
The PEIF National patron was speaking when he disbursed K55 500 to five groups and individuals in Kitwe today, Mr Kabwe said youths should think outside the box and come up with ideas that are viable.
He said out of the beneficiaries, 42 are youths from Zambia Deaf Youth and Women, 9 women from the Catholic Church, 3 taxi operators from Wusakile, 20 from Buyantanshi women group, 10 marketeers from Chisokone market and 8 individuals.
He further disclosed that the first lady left an instruction through his office that land should be acquired for Buyantanshi women club when she visited Kitwe for the women’s day celebrations.
Meanwhile, Buyantanshi Women of Vision Club Secretary Erica Nyirenda said her organisation is grateful with the gesture by the First Lady Esther Lungu to give them land and has assured the first lady that the land will be utilised for agriculture purposes.
‘’ We are very grateful for the support you have given us and we would like to recommend that you continue doing the same to women in other districts in the country so that we stand up to support our families and the community so that attain economic freedom,’’ Ms Nyirenda said.
Ms Nyirenda was confident that with the assistance from government, Buyantanshi would achieve greater development in all aspects.
And his deputy Alex Chiteme urged the beneficiaries to repay the funds on time to give chance to others who are on the waiting list and desist from using the money to hold parties.
‘’ Use the money wisely and invest in project that will help you sustain your families. Avoid buying household items and holding parties to show off’’ Mr Chiteme said.