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On State Police Demand We Stand- Fayemi, Obaseki, Sanwo-Olu, el-Rufai

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Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, and Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, with his Lagos, Edo and Kaduna counterparts, Messrs Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Godwin Obaseki and Nasir el-Rufai have reiterated their position on state police insisting on same as panacea to the increasing insecurity trend in localities within the country.

They said the centralisation of control and command of the security agencies in their respective states was affecting investments, development and wellbeing of the people adversely.

They also canvassed a robust multi-layer policing system in the country, to protect the citizens and investments that can drive development.

This came as Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, yesterday, urged the 36 state governors to come up with ideas that can grow the economy, by investing in the most appropriate ways in areas of their economic strength and stop reliance on federal allocations for survival.

They spoke at Ekiti Economic and Investment summit tagged: ‘Fountain Summit 2021’ organised by the Ekiti State government to find sustainable solutions to some socio-economic issues besetting the state.

The summit, titled: ‘Investment Attractiveness and Economic Development: Lesson for the Sub-Nationals’, was attended by governors el-Rufai, Obaseki, Sanwo-Olu and their counterpart from Ondo, Rotimi Akeredolu, represented by his deputy, Lucky Ayedatiwa, with members of the business community and diplomatic corps.

In his opening remarks, Governor Fayemi lamented that the lingering security crisis in the country is gradually crippling the economy.

Fayemi said: “This request does not mean abrogation of the central Police. If you have a problem with security in Kaduna, Governor el-Rufai can easily take charge.

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“My recent experience and many of our governors were not even palatable where we wanted to procure drones and Mr President was with us on the issue but the National Security Adviser, NSA, refused us End User Certificate, but we got it one year after.

“As of now, security is on the exclusive list. Even If the FG allows us to procure some arms, we have to sign MoU with the Nigerian Air Force.

“We have to work together collaboratively because investors consider security as number one in any state.”

Backing the call for state police, Governor Obaseki of Edo State said police should be removed from the exclusive list for state chief executives to be in firm control.

“If you have a business, you have to protect them and you must have the apparatuses. Security is on the exclusive list and we are looking up to the Federal Government to remove for states to take charge.

“We must provide facilities for the police to be able to train our local vigilante, because in Edo State that was what we did.

“We raised a vigilante group to police our villages from kidnappers and other criminals.”

Speaking about the role of ICT in driving the economy at the subnational level, he urged states to use ICT to recast primary education by making the children at that age perceive computers as part of their lives.

Lending his voice to the creation of state police, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, said: “When you have investments, you would have to protect them and take responsibility for whatever happens.

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“The investors will rely on the governors for protection and, sadly, we are not in charge.

“This is the area where the Federal Government must look into the issue of state police.”

On his part, Governor El-Rufai described security as a big problem that every Nigerian should be concerned about.

Explaining why the policing system should be decentralised, El-Rufai said: “We have 150,000 personnel in the Nigerian Army.

“Police were 400,000 by the time this government came on board but has gone down to 300,000 now.

“We need multi-level police. Policing is local just like a unitary environment like Britain.

“Kaduna State is about 46,000sqkms in size; Boko Haram has been chased from the Northeast by ISWAP and now occupying the Northwest.

“But if they are dislodged here, where would they go? This is why we should all be concerned.

“No country can develop beyond the level of its civil service, you must appoint the right civil servants and We just give way for younger people to take Nigeria to the next level.”

Osinbajo tasks govs to invest in areas of economic advantage

In his speech, Vice President Osinbajo challenged state governors to invest in areas of economic advantage.

He said: “Attracting investments to any state should be the major focus of state chief executives because that is the revenue hub and determinant of how happy the people of any state will be in terms of economic development with their standard of living.

“But while trying to grow investments, we must be cautious of multiple taxations; it weighs down businesses.

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“Ekiti is a business-friendly environment. Ekiti has also excelled in the aspect of ease of doing business. You have vast arable lands for agriculture.

“Let me say that Ekiti has a bigger economy than many Africa nations.

“The question we should ask ourselves is that if I were the landlord of this sub-nation, how do we survive? During my time as a Commissioner in Lagos, we started with N600 million monthly Internally Generated Revenues, IGRs, in 1999.

“The seizure of Lagos funds by President Olusegun Obasanjo made us think like a sovereign state.

“Today, Lagos is making over N45 billion monthly.

“The surest way forward is to deepen investments in the areas where Ekiti has a comparative advantage.

“We should also make a good investment in technology to grow the knowledge economy, which is education.”

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HAVING A FIRSTBANK SALARY ACCOUNT CAN EASE YOUR MONEY PROBLEMS, FIND OUT HOW…

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First Bank

“There is always a lot to spend money on, and sometimes the bills can’t wait for the salary to be paid” Tope complained when his wife informed him that they had run out of cooking gas and had to refill.

 

He had just moved to a new location with his family and the bills seemed to be coming at such speed that he could hardly keep up.

 

Barely three weeks in the new apartment, the electricity bill had arrived. The new apartment was bigger than the last and their two double-seater cushions left too much space vacant in the seating room. They needed to get a couple more furniture to fill the space. His wife had not stopped reminding him of the car he promised to get, in order to ease mobility for the family.

 

Everyone has been a Tope at some point in time, and that is why everyone needs a financial partner like FirstBank, Nigeria’s premier and leading financial services brand. FirstBank offers a variety of loan products that can help you ease off pressure as you work towards meeting pressing and urgent needs, as well as medium term goals.

FirstAdvance is a digital product tailored for Salary Account holders, who have an urgent cash need and would want to access salary advance from the bank. If you have held a salary account with FirstBank for up to two months, you can access 50% of your monthly net salary and as much as half a million naira (N500,000).

 

A physical visit to the bank branch is not required as you can access it via the FirstMobile (FirstBank’s Mobile banking app) and USSD channels. To access the service via USSD, dial *894*11# from the phone number linked with your FirstBank account. This has proved to be the solution for many people while emergencies arise before pay day. There is no point in waiting for month end before you can take on those pressing financial obligations.

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FirstCredit is another digital product designed to cater for the non-salaried individuals. All that is required is for your account to have been active and transacting in FirstBank for six months or more to access FirstCredit. It provides customers with quick and easy access to loans to fund urgent transactions. You do not need a smart phone or a physical visit to the bank to get this done as well. This credit facility can be accessed using a mobile phone and the USSD banking code, *894*11#. You can access as much as N300,000 to be repaid within 30 days.

 

No physical documentation or collateral is required, neither do you need a physical visit to the bank to access both loans. Imagine the confidence that comes with sorting out your bills within minutes and without having to wait till month end.

 

Salary accounts should do more than receiving your monthly pay from your employer. It should be instrumental in making your day-to-day living easier, and this is what having your salary account with FirstBank can achieve for you. You can get a Personal Loan Against Salary (PLAS) if you have a a longer-term project at hand or investments to make. It may be paying school fees for your kids, acquiring assets or renovating your properties, paying rent, taking professional examinations.

 

Customer who qualify can access Up to N50 million based on their net monthly income and rates are competitive, while offering long term and flexible repayments up to 48 months tenor.

 

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Truly, it is always “YOU FIRST” from FirstBank.

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UBA Group Dominates the 2021 Banker Awards, Wins ‘African Bank of the Year’

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UBA

Breaks the Banker Magazine Record as it wins Best Bank in Nigeria and 12 of Its Subsidiaries Africa’s global bank, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc yet again, reaffirms its leadership position across Africa, as the bank has been globally recognised as the African Bank of the year 2021 by the Banker Magazine, a leading global finance news publication published by the Financial Times of London.

 

UBA’s solid financial performance, its excellent service delivery to customers and its continuous role of facilitating rapid economic growth across the African continent were some of the reasons that led to the bank being named best bank in 12 of its African subsidiaries and in Nigeria. UBA Nigeria Plc, UBA Benin, UBA Burkina Faso, UBA Cameroon, UBA Chad, UBA Congo Brazzaville, UBA Cote D’Ivoire, UBA Gabon, UBA Guinea, UBA Liberia, UBA Senegal, UBA Sierra Leone and UBA Zambia all came out top as the best banks in their respective countries.

 

This will not be a first for UBA. In 2020, six of its subsidiaries in Benin, Cote D’Ivoire, Chad, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Zambia were winners of the Best Bank award. This year, the UBA Group is breaking a record with its exceptional wins as African Bank of the Year and Bank of the year in 13 countries. The total 14 awards makes it the first time ever in the history of the almost 100 years of The banker, that any banking group will be clinching as many as 14 wins in a single year.

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At the Virtual award ceremony which was held on December 1st 2021, the Middle East and Africa Editor for The Banker, John Everington, explained at the event that a rigorous and highly analytical process is made annually to reach the decision for each Bank of the Year award and the institution’s reputation for independence, authority and integrity is thoroughly applied to each submission.

 

“While several African banks impressed the judges this year, there was no doubt as to the worthiest recipient of the Bank of the Year for Africa – UBA Group – a clear winner across a wide range of criteria. UBA has performed impressively across its footprint with a strong financial performance across most of its markets,” Everington said.

 

UBA’s Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Kennedy Uzoka, who expressed delight over the recognition from The Banker stated “Like I always say, at UBA, we must be doing something right. Winning 14 total awards in13 subsidiaries and the Bank of the Year on the African continent is a big achievement.’

 

Continuing, Uzoka said, “The recognitions come as a reassurance that we are on track in consolidating our leadership position in Africa, as we continue to create superior value for all our stakeholders. We have our millions of customers across the globe and our many thousands of staff to thank for this. They are the very reason why we keep winning’

 

Since1926, the Bank of the Year awards has been celebrating the best of global banking and is regarded as the industry standard for banking excellence. The 2021 edition highlights those institutions that have outshone their peers in terms of performance, strategic initiatives and response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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The Banker Magazine is a publication of the Financial Times – a leading global finance news publication which has been in existence since 1888. The Banker magazine is the definitive reference in international banking for high level decision makers.

 

United Bank for Africa Plc is a leading Pan-African financial institution, offering banking services to more than twenty-five million customers, across over 1,000 business offices and customer touch points, in 20 African countries.

 

With presence in the United States of America, the United Kingdom and France, UBA is connecting people and businesses across Africa through retail; commercial and corporate banking; innovative cross-border payments and remittances; trade finance and ancillary banking services

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Crisis Rocks Ghana Parliament As Members Clash Over 2022 budget

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Ghana

The 2022 budget of Ghana suffered another set back as the House could not reach concerts on its passage.

 

The Minister of Finance, Mr. Ken Ofori Atta had presented the budget for the House to deliberate upon and possibly approve it for passage to the president to work with. But the House is in disagreement.

 

The Majority members had earlier hoped in easy passage but, they were shocked to witness a tie in the House. The ruling Party, New Patriotic Party ( NPP) has 137 members in the House, same to the main opposition party, The New Democratic Congress(NDC)

 

The Speaker who could have added one to the ruling NPP lacks the constitutional right, as the Constitution denies him voting right as the presiding officer.

 

The case will then be taken to the Supreme Court for intervention. The issue has been a major challenge threatening the smooth democracy in the country. The decision to go to Supreme Court is expected to be taken before or by Friday sitting.

 

By Moses Owopade,

Accra, Ghana.

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