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Competition 2020 Brings Out The Finest Young Creative Writers in a Challenging Year…..Ten out of the twelve  winners are girls





The UBA Foundation, the CSR arm of the United Bank for Africa, today, held its tenth annual National Essay Competition(NEC) in a virtual ceremony that was attended by high school students from across the nation. The UBA Foundation’s Education initiative has been changing lives for a decade as the tertiary education scholarship programme continues to impact the lives of many students and their communities.


For the fourth consecutive year, the females have been leading this competition with14 year-old Eshiet Abasiekeme of Bright Stars Model Secondary School from Akwa-Ibom state taking home this year’s winning prize.  Eshiet received an educational grant of N2,500,000.00 to study in any African university of her choice. She will also be supported throughout her educational career and beyond with constant mentoring by the UBA Foundation.

Abasiekeme who had joined the virtual event from her base in Akwa Ibom state in Nigeria, could not contain her excitement as she heard the announcement that she had won the first prize of the NEC 2020. “I feel honoured to be the winner of this year’s NEC, and I want to appreciate UBA and UBA Foundation as this will help towards my dream of becoming a lawyer,” she said proudly, expressing that she would like to go to university in Uyo in her home state.

The second prize was awarded to 14 year old  Mofoluwake Adesanya of Spring Forte-Lead College Lagos State, who won a N2,000,000 educational grant, whilst the third prize of N1,500,000 went to Abdulganiyy Habeebah, 16 years old. Abdulganiyy attends the International School, University of Lagos.  

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Eshiet and the 11 other finalists, took home their brand new lap top computers to enable them continue to work competitively in a world that is rapidly becoming fully digitalised.

Congratulating all the winners at the final event of the competition, the Managing Director/CEO of UBA Foundation, Bola Atta, applauded all the participants for their exceptional brilliance.  She explained that the Foundation had taken into consideration the effect that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on lives and incomes across board and had increased the prize money by 33 per cent this year to help cushion any negative or inflationary effects.

Emphasising the driving force behind the annual competition, she said, “We are passionate about the annual NEC because it changes lives and helps to improve the quality of lives of students and their families. The NEC helps to improve the quality of writing and competitiveness amongst students. We have launched in more African countries this year and would have launched the initiative in 20 countries by the end of 2021. It is not just about writing essays, the ripple effect is really quite enormous, and we are glad that it is cascading to other countries where we operate.’ she said.

Also speaking at the opening of the event, the Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of UBA Plc, Mr. Kennedy Uzoka,  commended all 12 finalists, expressing that UBA was happy to be touching lives and making a solid impact through its National Essay Competition, which is now in its 10th edition.  He was very pleased about the fact that more females again came out tops this year, adding that notwithstanding the constraints and challenges of 2020, the Foundation received the highest number of entries ever, at over 12,000 digital submissions’.


Uzoka who is also the Chairman, UBA Foundation said, “The NEC has been changing lives positively for 10 years, and we have awarded scholarships to students not just in Nigeria but in other parts of Africa like Ghana, Sierra Leone and Senegal.  Some of these students are already graduates and contributing meaningfully to their communities’.

To all 12 of you that have emerged finalists, I would like to congratulate you. If out of 12,000 entries you were able to make it to the top 12, that represents about 0.12% of the entries. You are no doubt, already a winner,” he continued.

UBA Foundation’s National Essay Competition is an initiative under the Education pillar of the Foundation. Now in its tenth year, the aim of the NEC is to ensure that more African youths have access to education. The programme also highlights the good quality of education that exists on the continent as it stresses that the grant must be used in any university of the winners’ choice on the African continent.


1 Eshiet Abasiekeme Eshiet   1st
2 Mofuluwake Adesanya   2nd
3 Abdulganiyu Habeeba   3rd
4 Emenugha Hannah Amarachi   4th
5 Ibem Marylyn Anya   5th
6 Ehibor Favour    6th
7 Nwabueze Regina Ugochi   6th
8 Dimaro Tamarapreye    7th
9 Ozoke Melvin Damian Uchenna    8th
10 Enobong Flourish David   9th
11 Chukwuma Light E. C.   10th
12 Stephen God’s Grant   11th



Ecobank, Ultima Studios Celebrate Budding Entrepreneurs as Lion’s Den Hits TV Screens




Starting from this Sunday, October 10th, bold and passionate entrepreneurs will be given the chance to pitch their businesses or ideas in the Lions’ Den, the world’s biggest business reality show debuting in Nigeria. The  business reality TV show is coming from the stable of Ultima Limited, the studios who brought Who Wants To Be a Millionaire and Project Fame West Africa, with the support of Ecobank Nigeria. 



The reality show will be showing every Sunday at 7pm on  AfricaMagic Family, Channels 154 on DSTV and GOTV Channel 2; with repeat broadcasts on Wednesdays at 3pm and on Fridays at 5pm on Africanmagic Urban, DSTV Channel 153. Viewers will have the opportunity to watch over 100 budding entrepreneurs from different industries pitch their businesses for an investment of a lifetime.




The Lions’ Den, also known as Dragons’ Den and Shark Tank in the UK and USA respectively, is acclaimed the world’s number one business reality television show. The Nigerian version, just like others will see the entrepreneurs pitch bold new ideas and inventions to five millionaires (also known as the Lions) who are searching for credible and promising investments and business ideas to fund.



The Lions include: Kyari Bukar, Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Trans-Sahara Investment Corporation; Paul Onwuanibe, Group Chief Executive Officer and Founder of the Landmark Group; Adenike Ogunlesi, Founder and Creative Director, Ruff “N” Tumble; Dan Ngerem, Chairman, Hensen Trust Group; and Bolaji Balogun, CEO Chapel Hill Denham.




The entrepreneurs must convince one or more of the investors to back their business ideas or they fail. They will need to prove themselves with hard facts and figures, and answer the investors’ probing questions. If the investors are impressed by any pitch, they negotiate aggressively to own the biggest possible share in the venture in exchange for cash.

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The show is captivating; especially when the investors start contending with each other to be the sole investor in promising ventures.



Patrick Akinwuntan, Managing Director, Ecobank Nigeria, who commended Ultima Studios for bringing the Lion’s Den franchise to Nigeria, says he is optimistic that the show would attract the right target audience including Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) seeking seed or expansion capital, aspiring entrepreneurs, and young graduates with bright business ideas.




He explained that Ecobank’s decision to be the Lead Sponsor of the reality TV show is in line with its commitment to support entrepreneurs who have good business ideas but need to raise funds for advancement. He maintained that the TV show has a proven track record of appealing to both male and female audiences across the globe.




The Lions’ Den is the world’s number one business reality show, adapted in over 30 countries worldwide. It is being packaged and produced in Nigeria by Ultima Limited, a leading reality television programmes producer in West Africa. It is a spinoff of the popular ‘Dragons Den’ and ‘Shark Tank’ in the UK and US respectively.

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Renowned and patriotic Yoruba son, Chief Stephen Ayodele Fatiregun has just published a remarkable book of more than a thousand pages with the title of THE WISDOM OF OUR YORUBA ELDERS’.


An alumni of the prestigious Harvard University in the United States of America and a former Managing Director of the multinational company, Hagemeyer (Nigeria)Plc is a collection of 10,000 carefully selected proverbs, fables and legends with English translations plus a compilation of 130 notable Nigerians of Yoruba origin.



Chief Fatiregun, a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Certified Accountants of London, dedicated the book to the memory of his treasured father, Pa Samuel Ajayi Fatiregun.



The book, a generational encyclopaedia for the Yorubas, narrates the historical background of the children of Oduduwa.



Chief Fatiregun, a Natural Medicine practitioner also laid emphasis on the Yoruba System of Ifa Divination – an imperishable gift to humanity.



The launch will hold on Tuesday, the 3rd of August, 2021 at Sheraton Hotel in Ikeja, Lagos by 11am.



The author, Chief Stephen Fatiregun is a passionate lover of the Yoruba culture & tradition.




The book, THE WISDOM OF OUR YORUBA ELDERS’ which was thoroughly researched took Chief Fatiregun a whopping 55 years to put together.

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Bethnews @ 6: Exceptional Leadership Awards 2021 And Publishers 40th Birthday Billed For August 1st




Come Sunday 1st August, 2021, (TBELA) Trust Bethnews Media Communications would be the toast of the Month as it would be celebrating 6 years of consistently informing Nigerians as well as present it’s glamorous EXCEPTIONAL LEADERSHIP AWARDS (TBELA) 2021 to the world.



However, the most important and spectacular aspect of Sunday’s event would be the convergence of the Media, Corporate, Politicians and Entertainment world and gathering of family and friends to witness and celebrate with the incredible and wonderful publisher of Bethnews, Mr. Seun Fabiyi, as he officially commences the journey of his fourth decade on earth.



Billed to hold at the Lagos NUT Pavilion Event Centre, NERDC Road, Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos, red carpet starts 1:pm while event proper from 2pm, the event is expected to be graced by the presence of the movers and shakers of all major industries and top dignitaries in government and monarchy.



Watch out for Official coverage from Seun Okinbaloye, Chief Kingsley Uranta of CHANNELS TV, Kolade Otitoju of TVC, Ola Onabajo of KAFTAN TV. And many more.

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