Please, share this until the government further enables women like Olawale Alimatu in Ogijo
Mrsceonaija (MCN) hit the road today to interview women in developing areas. The objective of the interview is to help create awareness of the impact of infrastructure on small businesses. Interview was conducted in Yoruba but translated to English below. Interview location is a small community called Ilara, ogijo in ogun state. It is about 1 hour+ drive from the RCCG church site, off lagos Ibadan express road. It was a really bumpy ride.
MCN: Good morning, please can we meet you?
Alimatu: I am Olawale Alimatu. Ehn, I’m a tailor but we are at a new site (developing area) so I am doing a lot of other things to make ends meet, I sell ‘provisions’, I do tailoring and I sell clothes.
MCN: What is the name of this area please?
Alimatu: We are in Ilara, Ogijo in Ogun state.
MCN: How did you get funds to start the business?
Alimatu: We started little by little, gradually, I got money from my thrift collection called ‘ajo’ in Yoruba.
MCN: Who are those participating in the ajo? Are you charged interest for funds collection?
Alimatu: No, myself and my friends contribute money and we take turns in collecting it weekly. This is how we get money to run our business and homes.
MCN: How do you get your goods into this location since the roads are not good?
Alimatu: Ah.. the road is not good at all…. I take Okada or Marwa. Sometimes, my husband rents cars to transport it whenever he has time. May God help us.
MCN: How is the business? Since the economy is a bit rough these days?
Alimatu: I am a bit discouraged, patronage is low since this area is still developing. Things are too expensive. I am almost giving up on this trading.
MCN: What can the government do to help your business to grow further?
Alimatu: I’ll love the government to help is fix the road. It is too difficult getting goods here. My body aches a lot from the frequent trips on okada. Also, because the road is bad, many people do not live here yet so I cannot practice my tailoring profession properly. Also, we’ll need government to help with funds to grow the businesses.
MCN: Thanks a lot for the time. We will share your story. We hope actions will be taken from this. Stay strong.
MCN is in awe of women like Alimatu who are defying all odds to create value and sustain their families in their own way. They are the true unsung heroes. Watch interview here Interview video