The Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has expressed fears that Nigeria may slide into another recession, if measures are not taken to tackle the high rate of unemployment and other economic crises.
Emefiele said this, yesterday, at the University of Benin, while delivering a lecture titled “Beyond the Global Financial Crisis: Monetary Policy Under Global Uncertainty”.
According to him, Monetary and Fiscal Policy Authority must rise up to the challenge to begin to think of what can be done to tackle the situation.
The CBN governor said: “From some of my concluding remarks, you may have observed, whether you like it or not, there is global uncertainty that will unfortunately, most certainly, lead to another crisis.
“The question could be; how are we, as Nigerians, particularly our leaders, I am talking of Monetary and Fiscal Policy Authority, how are we preparing our country for the next set of crisis?”
He said, “We have luckily exited recession. We have seen inflation pending downward from about 18.72 per cent in 2017 to about 11. 37 per cent, today. We see reserve moving up, exchange rate stabilizing but unfortunately, we still have issues and those issues border on unemployment rate.”
He assured that CBN would continue to take proactive approach in mitigating the likely adverse effects that may emanate from external headwinds.
Meanwhile, the House of Representatives has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to sanction 16 commercial banks for under-remitting stamp duty revenue to the tune of N1.6 billion.
It also asked the CBN to ensure the banks pay the outstanding revenue with interests.
The House reached the decision after adopting the report of the ad-hoc committee which investigated the non-remittance of the stamp duties yesterday.
Leaks.ng, a collation of media houses, had reported that the agencies refused to disclose details of the stamp duty revenue whose status has been shrouded in secrecy over the years.
Following the report, the House set up an ad-hoc committee to investigate the matter and report its findings.
CBN officials had told the committee the total stamp duty revenue since January 2016 stands at N35.2 billion.
The committee’s report, as presented by its chairman, Abubakar Ahmad, listed the indicted banks with highest under-remitted stamp duty revenues as Diamond Bank, with N545.87 million; Zenith Bank, with N265.63 million, and Stanbic IBTC, with N231 million.
The other banks indicted include Guaranteed Trust Bank (N196.3 million); Standard Chartered Bank (N3.65 million); Citi Bank (N1.86 million); and Providus Bank (N646,650).
Others are Fidelity Bank (N32.88 million), Keystone Bank (N24.47 million), United Bank of Africa (N81 million), and ECOBANK (N78.52 million)
Also indicted are Unity Bank (N40 million), Jaiz Bank (N2.43 million), Access Bank (N66 million), Skye Bank (N11 million), and Polaris Bank (N2.9 million).
The House, however, called for further investigation into four banks which it said failed to honour their invitations. The banks include First Bank of Nigeria, First City Monument Bank, Wema Bank and Suntrust Bank.
Apart from penalising the 16 banks, the lawmakers also asked CBN to strengthen its supervisory role over the stamp duty revenue to ensure they are collected promptly.
It also called for a machinery to allow for the recovery of under -remittances “after further reconciliation is carried out with the banks concerned.”
Other recommendations include:
That all banks that were found not to have made full disclosure on stamp duties collections and remittances should be further investigated.
That financial institutions, especially the deposit money banks (DMBs) should remit all collections with respect to government revenues promptly and correctly, and where remittances are not promptly done, the DMBs should be sanctioned.
That the relevant agencies should give maximum cooperation to the School of Banking Honours (SBH) to enable it realise the goal of the assignment given to it.
That other forms of stamp duty should be explored “to increase the revenue base of various tiers of government in accordance with the provisions of the Stamp Duty Act, 2004
RSG Warns Owner Of Proudest Hotel To Stop Blackmailing NCDC
Our attention has been drawn to a recent misleading petition, signed by one Mr. Needam Promise Gogorobari, Owner, Prodest Hotel and dated 24th May 2020,
to the effect that the convicted Manager of Prodest Hotel, Mr. Bariledum Job Azoroh, who recently tested positive for Covid-19 disease amongst 27 others, in a result released by the National Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, may have allegedly been infected on the instructions of the Rivers State Government.
Much as we had restrained ourselves from responding to previous similar publications by this same person, since the subject matter was still before a court of competent jurisdiction, we are now compelled to reply this obviously spurious, deliberately misleading and intentionally provocative petition with a proper response, to set the records straight and caution the sponsors of this action from further pedlling such falsehoods in the public space.
For the avoidance of doubt and for the information of the general public, let us state categorically here that the FACTS of this matter are very clear, viz:
1. A Port Harcourt Senior Magistrates’ Court on May 18th, 2020 CONVICTED Mr. Bariledum Azoro, Manager of Prodest Hotel, Eleme and sentenced him to a fine of N50,000 for contravening paragraphs 3 and 4 of Executive Order RVSG 07 2020 on closure of hotels, guest houses and related outfits and provision of manifests in the state.
2. The Senior Magistrates’ Court also ordered that th convict,Mr. Azoroh should be quarantined at the Isolation Centre in Yakubu Gowon Stadium, Elekahia for 14 days to ascertain his coronavirus status.
3. That while in the Court Ordered Quarantine, competent health officials carried out mandatory tests on all suspected Coronavirus individuals at the centre, including Mr.Bariledum Job Azoroh, to ascertain their Covid-19 status.
It is important to state here that COVID-19 tests undergo World Health Organization, (WHO) and NCDC guidelines and are conducted under strict established medical protocols.
4. That prior to the publication of the test results, the owner of PRODEST Hotel Eleme, Mr. Gogorobari Needam had published one of his misleading petitions in an attempt to preempt the outcome of the test and the question we want to ask is: ‘Why did the hotel owner try to preempt the outcome of the test. Was he trying to cover up something?
5. That on Sunday, 24th May, 2020, the NCDC announced that Rivers State had 27 recorded positive cases including Mr.Bariledum Job Azoroh, from tests carried out in the state.
6. That following the official announcement of the result and confirmation of his Manager’s Covid-19 positive status, the PRODEST Hotel owner has once again released another statement and this time is now calling for a state of emergency in Rivers State because his manager tested positive for Covid-19.
7. Rivers people will recall that on May 19, 2020, we raised an alarm intimating the world of a clandestine plot by some Abuja politicians hiding under the cover of Covid-19 to instigate a State of Emergency in the state. Today, a hotel owner in Eleme, who lives in Lagos is also now calling for a State of Emergency. Is there any wonder therefore as to who is beating the drum for him?
8. Indeed there seems to be more to this than meets the ordinary eye and we are calling on all well-meaning people to see the need to interrogate this man and know that he is acting out a script. Infact, the entire petition sounds and reads like something lifted directly from the copy book of those who have been desperately trying to run down the Rivers State Government. This is desperation taken too far.
9. We even recall vividly that Mr. Needam Promise Gogorobari had, in an interview published in the Punch Newspaper of May 15, 2020 titled: “No ill feeling towards Wike for demolishing my hotel – Gogorobari”, actually stated categorically that he holds no grudge against Governor Wike for demolishing the hotel. His words: “Who am I not to forgive him? I don’t hold any grudge against him. I just feel that God wanted it to happen that way”. So what happened to make him change his mind? Is it not obvious that the agents of evil and those who do not mean well for Rivers State have reached him and are now beating this drum of dissent for him?
10. Again, We want to state categorically here that Government doesn’t conduct Covid-19 tests. Trained Health professionals follow the relevant medical protocols set down by WHO, the Federal Ministry of Health and the NCDC, to conduct these tests.
11. The claim therefore that the PRODEST Hotel manager, Mr. Bariledum Job Azoroh, was infected while in detention is not only laughable and preposterous, but sadly and dangerously exposes the amazing ignorance and naivety of Mr. Needam Promise Gogorobari and those sponsoring him about the deadly nature of the Covid-19 disease. How does one even carry such a deadly virus around and infect people with it?
12. Rather than commend the Rivers State Government for stemming the tide of infection that would have arisen if the Hotel used for clandestine parties was not demolished and the Manager arrested, the owner is crying wolf where there is none.
13. We also want to caution Mr. Needam Promise Gogorobari to be very mindful of his claims that his hotel Manager “has been framed up by an unorthodox hired medical officers recruited by Governor Wike with a report that he has tested positive to COVID-19 whilst in detention with the Rivers State Government”.
This is a clear accusation and indictment of the reputation and authority of the NCDC.
14 We also want to call the attention of Mr. Needam Gogorobari that we take exception to his description of the Isolation Centre in Port Harcourt, as an “illegal detention facility in Stadium, Elekahia, Port Harcourt” and to inform him and his sponsors that the Director General of NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu and a team from the World Health Organization, were in Rivers State on a working visit in April this year and not only praised Governor Nyesom Wike for his leadership and handling of the Covid-19 outbreak. but also applauded his medical health team and all the facilities put in place in response to the Coronavirus.
We will therefore be keen to know how the NCDC will react, when they read your description of a facility they approved, as ‘a detention centre’.
15. Finally, we want to assure the good people of the state that the Rivers State Government remains resolute in its fight to curtail the spread of COVID-19 in the state and we will not be deterred by cheap blackmail and misleading propaganda.
16 Governor Wike is determined to employ and deploy appropriate strategies to keep Rivers State safe.
17. We call on all residents to work together with the Governor to defeat Covid-19 in Rivers State and by the Grace of God we will be victorious.
Commissioner for Information and Communications
May 26, 2020
Banigo Felicitates With Justice Wike On Her Birthday
Rivers State Deputy Governor, Dr. Mrs. Ipalibo Harry Banigo has felicitated with the wife of the State Chief Executive Hon. Justice Eberechi Suzzette Nyesom Wike as she celebrates her birthday on Saturday, 23rd May, 2020.
In a statement from the Government House in Port Harcourt on Friday, 23rd May 2020, Dr. Banigo described Hon. Justice Wike as a humane and God fearing woman who is a great pillar of strength to our amiable Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike.
While wishing her many happy returns the Deputy Governor prayed the Almighty God to continue to protect and bless Hon. Justice Eberechi Suzzette Nyesom Wike.
Former Nigeria President Jonathan Loses Foster Dad.
The family of former Nigerian President,Goodluck Jonathan and the Otuoke community of Ogbia Local Government Area of Bayelsa state has been thrown into mourning as the News of the sudden demise of Chief Nitabai Inegite,the former president’s foster father reached them.
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