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Failed Banks: Odili, Lafiagi, Others Fingered

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Senators on Tuesday named Nigerians who abused their positions in banks, borrowed loans worth N53.3 billion, and refused to pay them back, which made the banks to go under.

A report presented to the senate by its committee on banking, insurance and other financial institutions listed a former governor, a former managing director of banks as contributors to such collapse.

A letter dated June 27, 2008 sent by the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Cooperation (NDIC) to the senate NDIC committee attached a list of ‘insider credits’ of 13 closed banks as at June 2008.

But it noted that in view of the fact that the accounts are insider related, the records are constantly reviewed and reconciled.

Those listed include former Kwara State Governor, Mohammed Lafiagi (N1,156,776.57 unlimited personal guarantee); Sanusi Ado Bayero (N45,003,963.93); former Gulf Bank Managing Director, Babajide Rogers (N11,874,216.56); Chrome Services and Related Companies chairman, Emeka Offor (N3,850,016,620) personal guarantee of Offor and 100,000 units of ordinary shares of Environmental Remediation Holding Corporation, USA), and another N3,850,016,620 loan without guarantee.

Victor Odili, N41,103,498.56 – fixed and floating debenture on the assets of the company, N2,628,979.05; N10,856,129.75.

Owner of liquidated All States Trust Bank now Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) chairman, Ebitimi Banigo, Nta Henshaw, and others (N48,551,995,304.83); former Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA) Governorship candidate Remi Bakare (N1,093,247,535.40); Mike Ajegbo (N210,291,896.21); C.M. Ibeto (N643,340,680.92); and former Information Minister, Dapo Sarumi (N3,847 743.90).

Oluwaogbon Motors chairman, S.O. Bakare (N544,585,269.86 and N21,311,398.59); former City Express Bank chairman, Samuel Adedoyin; former City Express Bank chief executive officer, Sola Adeoti, Former Minister of State for Health, Funke Adedoyin (N5,131,275,864.01); and Angela Onyeador (N30,755,363.13-legal mortgage).

Committee chairman, Nkechi Nwaogu, noted that 50 banks failed because of the huge debts that were never paid, including 36 which crashed before consolidation in 2005, and 14 after consolidation.

But less than two minutes after she read out the list, threatening death text messages flooded her mobile telephone, according to Eyinnaya Abaribe who sat beside her.

Based on the death threats, senate president David Mark, directed the inspector general of police, Mike Okiro, to provide personal security for all the 12 members of the committee immediately.

He lamented that the debtors could go to the extent of threatening the lives of the committee members when they are supposed to be ashamed.

Mark told the committee members: “You have performed wonderfully well and there is absolutely nothing for you to fear because you have done what you ought to do for your country.

“All those sending text messages to you should think twice about what they have done to this country rather than having effrontery to send text messages to you.

“All of us here take collective responsibility for this report. It is not a report from senator Nkechi Nwaogu”

Chairman, Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers and Oba of Ogbaland, HRM, Eze Chukwumela Nnam Obi (right), with former Head of State, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari as guests at the first Marshall Harry Memorial Lecture in Port Harcourt, last Monday. Chris Monyanaga.

Chairman, Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers and Oba of Ogbaland, HRM, Eze Chukwumela Nnam Obi (right), with former Head of State, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari as guests at the first Marshall Harry Memorial Lecture in Port Harcourt, last Monday. Chris Monyanaga.

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2023: PWDs Seek Inclusion In Election Processes 

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As Nigeria joins the rest of the world to mark the International Day of Persons With Disabilities (IDPD), Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) have tasked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and other electoral stakeholders on accessibility of polling booths and election materials
The PWDs also urged the INEC to ensure that the over 30 million PWDs are not disenfranchised in the 2023 general elections.
The disabilities community also called on presidential and governorship candidates to come up with tangible roadmap of policies and programmes that will alleviate their sufferings in the country..
They spoke separately with journalists on the  IDPD, a day set aside by the United Nations (UN) to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilise support for the dignity, rights and wellbeing of persons with disabilities.
The theme for this year’s IDPD is ‘Transformative Solutions for Inclusive Development: The Role of innovation in Fuelling An Accessible and Equitable World,’ with focus on the overarching theme of innovation and transformative solutions for inclusive development, covering three different interactive dialogues.
The first dialogue is innovation for disability inclusive development in employment, discussing the linkages between employment, knowledge and skills required to access employment in an innovative, rapidly changing technological world.
Another dialogue was the innovation for disability inclusive development in reducing inequality, focusing on innovations, practical tools and good practices to reduce inequalities in both public and private sectors.
The third dialique was the innovation for disability inclusive development with sport as an  case, a sector where all of these aexemplarspects coalesce.
Explaining the importance of the day, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said it is important for governments and all of society to include PWDs in decision-making about their health and lives.
“WHO calls for more inclusion in the health sector and society, in line with the newly adopted ‘WHO framework for action to achieve the highest attainable standard of health for persons with disabilities 2022–2030’.

“The framework is an ambitious strategy that calls on countries to ensure that people with disabilities can access the care they need, and outline ways for countries to build inclusive and enabling health systems and environments.”

The Executive Director, Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), David Anyaele, said issues that deal with PWDs ahead of the general elections give them cause for worries, as the campaigns of the leading presidential candidates are low on welfare for them.

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Flooding: 600 Persons Died, 1.3m Dsplaced-UNICEF

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The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has said about 600 persons died and 1.3 million were rendered homeless as a result of the floods that ravaged most states across the country.
Chief of UNICEF Field Office, Enugu, Juliet Chiluwe, stated this on Saturday, during an official handover of supplies for Anambra State Flood Response from UNICEF to Anambra State Government.
Chiluwe said the figure was obtained according to available data it received from government.
During the visit by the UNICEF, the first set of supplies of 100 drums of chlorine for disinfection of water sources, 40 cartons of Aquatabs for household water treatment and 320 cartons of Ready to Use Therapeutic food were handed over to the state governor, Prof. Chukwuma Soludo, who was represented by his deputy, Onyekachukwu Ibezim.
In her address, Chiluwe said, “We bring you greetings from UNICEF, Nigeria and sympathise with the government and people of Anambra State on the recently encountered flooding experience, especially with the women and children who remained vulnerable during these times.
“We acknowledged that since September 2022, the worst floods in a decade affected 2.8 million people, of which an estimated 60 per cent are children, across 34 of the 36 states in Nigeria. Of those affected, 1.3 million people have been displaced, and over 600 people have died in relation to flooding according to government data.
“Continuous heavy rains have collapsed hundreds of public health facilities, water systems and sanitation facilities, increasing the risk of waterborne diseases, such as cholera, diarrhoea, and malaria.
“To contribute to the effort of government and other development partners, UNICEF, with funding from the  Central Emergency Response Fund, has initiated a multisectoral response comprising Health, Child Protection and WASH sectors, to mitigate the impact of the floods support the early recovery-phase of the affected population in Anambra State.
“For child protection, the response will focus on protection concerns in three key areas: the provision of psychosocial support for flood-affected children; the prevention of family separation and the reunification of separated and unaccompanied children, as well as the strengthening of community-based protection systems.”
She added that as part of the response, UNICEF would make available, essential medicines and health supplies, sexual reproductive kit, chlorine for disinfection of water sources in health centres, schools and communities.
In his response,  governor Soludo assured UNICEF of continuous collaborations, adding that the state government was working out modalities to mitigate the effect of the flood on victims as well as put proactive measures to checkmate such emergencies in the future.
He commended UNICEF’s interventions in the state, especially as it concerned women and children.

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Minister Tasks Examination Agencies On  ICT, Others Against Malpractice

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Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, has called on examination and assessment agencies in the country to adopt the use of ICT as best method to prevent malpractices and build a multi-dimensional approach to address the menace.
Adamu made the call at the opening of a One-Day National Sensitisation Workshop, tagged: ‘Role of Education Stakeholders in Tackling Examination Malpractice’, organised by National Examination Council (NECO), in conjunction with the National Assembly, held at Marriott Hotel,  Ikeja, Lagos.
Represented by the Registrar, Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, Adamu noted that malpractice was a major problem affecting examinations, not only in Nigeria but also in other countries.
“This is a threat, and many of us are directly or indirectly involved in exam malpractices. We must be creative in adopting strategies and putting in measures to fight and stand against malpractice,” he said.
Adamu stated that the Federal Ministry of Education would continue to ensure a high standard of education to reduce malpractices.
NECO Registrar, Ibrahim Wushishi, said it waa time to reorient youths, community leaders, parents and teachers concerning the issue.
“No doubt, examination malpractice has the tendency to discourage hard work among serious students, lower education standards and discredit certificates. We have a collective responsibility to stop this bad habit.”
The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Education (Basic/Secondary), Prof. Julius Ihonvbere, stressed the need for stakeholders to work together to boost the education sector.
He also expressed disappointment that children no longer fear to indulge in examination malpractice because sanctions are lacking.

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