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Niger Delta

MTN Engages Stakeholders On Public Offer In Bayelsa, Benin City

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MTN Nigeria Communications Plc (MTN) has offered to sell 575 million units of its shares to retail investors, saying shares will be available to the public at N169 per unit from 1st December to 14th December 2021.
MTN Nigeria made this disclosure during a stakeholders engagement event, aimed at enlightening and engaging interested retail investors in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State and Edo state capital of Benin City, respectively.
Giving further details of the benefits of the public offer in Yenagoa, the General Manager, Business Development MTN Nigeria, Mr Valentine Izuchukwu, said that sales of the share did not in any way mean that MTN intends to leave Nigeria or is financially bankrupt.
He explained that the MTN Group, which holds 79 percent of the shares of the company, is making this public offer because it has decided to sell parts of its shares to Nigerians, so that they can also be part of the ownership of the company.
He reiterated MTN’s Nigerianisation agenda and commitment to doing business in Nigeria.
“We have done some things to guarantee the future of MTN in Nigeria. We have built the longest kilometers of fibre which guarantees the provision of quality internet service. The company has also decided to build its corporate headquarters in Lagos.
“This means, we have decided to stop renting an office space and build our roots in Nigeria. We have also made a commitment to contribute to road infrastructure in Nigeria. We are partnering with the government to construct road infrastructure and the first road the government has assigned for MTN to construct is the Enugu-Onitsha road. This goes a long way to prove that we are committed to remain in Nigeria and contribute to the success stories of every Nigerian.”
Giving a breakdown of the shares offer, the Senior Manager, Treasury Operations and Support, MTN Nigeria, Tolani Akanbi, said, “The minimum subscription is for 20 shares and lots of 20 shares thereafter. The offer includes an incentive in the form of 1 free share for every 20 shares purchased, subject to a maximum of 250 free shares per investor. The incentive is open to retail investors who buy and hold the shares allotted to them for at least 12 months, post the allotment date.”
She explained that the retail offer will be delivered via a digital platform, using the power of technology to facilitate the maximum possible participation by Nigerian investors.
Also speaking at the ceremony in Edo, Benin City, the Chief Customer Relations Officer, MTN Nigeria, Ugonwa Nwoye, made a passionate appeal to Edo people to take advantage of the opportunity and buy shares in the telecommunication service provider.
She said that initially the shares sold for over N200 per share but was reduced to N169 to allow more Nigerians to buy shares in the largest mobile network operator.
According to Nwoye, MTN Nigeria, as the second biggest company at the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) after Dangote Cement, has never defaulted in paying its shareholders since 2019 when it was listed at the NSE.
In the same vein, the Senior Manager Investor Relations, MTN Nigeria, Chima Nwaokoma, noted that the company in the last 20 years had grown to become the biggest company at the Nigerian Stock Exchange in terms of capitalisation.
Nwaokoma highlighted some benefits of holding shares in MTN, saying, “We pay dividends twice in a year. We pay interim and final dividends. We have consistently paid to our shareholders and have never defaulted. There’s no limit to what you can buy. Edo people should take advantage of the offer and buy our shares.”

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Niger Delta

Eno Sacks Commissioner For Special Duties

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Akwa Ibom State Governor, Umo Eno has relieved the Commissioner for Special Duties, Dr Bassey Okon, of his appointment with immediate effect.
Secretary to the State Government, Mr Enobong Uwah, disclosed this in a statement in Uyo on Monday.
Uwah, who did not give reasons for the commissioner’s sack, directed him to hand over all state government properties in his possession to the Permanent Secretary.
He thanked the former commissioner for the period he served the state, and wished him well in his future endeavours.

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Niger Delta

Check Oil Pollution In N’Delta, Stakeholders Urge Oil Firms

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Stakeholders in host communities have demanded that oil companies be compelled to address adverse health impact of oil exploration in the Niger-Delta.
They made their position known on Monday during a public presentation of the research report on the impact of oil extraction on women’s health in Otuabagi community in Bayelsa.
The Tide’s source reports that Dr Emem Okon, Director, Kebetkache Women Development and Resource Centre, an NGO, championed the event.
The source also reports that Otuabagi Community within the Oloibiri District in present Ogbia Local Government Area is where crude oil was discovered in commercial quantity in Nigeria in 1956.
Okon said the report highlighted the adverse consequences of oil extraction which had profound negative impact on health and livelihood of women in Otuabagi community.
She said research revealed that several of the participants had hydrocarbons in their blood sample more than World Health Organisation (WHO) threshold and therefore demanded for compensation from oil companies and government.
“There is, therefore, a need to demand for compensation and restoration of polluted sites as well as health actions to keep us alive and to resist death, poverty and injustice”, she said.
She stated that the findings and data would serve as a tool for policy makers, community leaders and all those who strove for a more equitable and sustainable future.
Meanwhile, Dr Bieye Briggs, a public health physician and head of the research team, said from the findings of the report, it was revealed that there was very high and unacceptable level of exposure of the people to hydrocarbons.
Briggs advocated for the Federal Government to carry out health audit in Otuabagi community and other oil producing areas in the Niger-Delta region.
He explained that such audit was with a view to instituting intervention program to halt and reverse the impact of oil exploration.
Similarly, Chief Daniel Amangi, the traditional ruler of Otuabagi community, commended Kebetkache Women Development and Resource Centre for undertaking the project and urged the Federal Government to focus on developing the community.
Amangi also called for the immediate implementation of the recommendations of the research findings for the overall benefit of the people.
In the same vein, Alagoa Morris, a stakeholder, lamented that life expectancy was lower in the Niger-Delta region than in other parts of the country due to the hazards caused by oil exploration.
He called for compensation to be paid to host communities to ameliorate the health impact of oil extraction in the region.
The ceremony also featured a drama presentation by Otuabagi women and panel discussion on the findings of the report.

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Niger Delta

Court Orders AAU Graduate’s Car, iPhone’s Forfeiture To FG

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A Benin High Court on Monday ordered the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to sell a Toyota Venza 2012 model, recovered from a graduate of Biochemistry from Ambrose Ali University, Ekpoma, Osadolor Edomwonyi.
The EFCC charged Edomwonyi with internet fraud.
Delivering judgment, Justice Efe Ikponmwonba, sentenced Edomwonyi to three years imprisonment.
The judge also ordered the forfeiture of an iPhone 13 Promax, recovered from the convict .
He also ordered that balances in his Opay account, Kids Bank account and Access Bank with which he was charged and convicted to the Federal Government through EFCC and the accounts be parmanently closed.
The convict prayed the court for a plea bargain agreement.
Ikponmwonba, however, gave him an option of fine in the sum of N100,000.
Earlier, the EFCC counsel, Mr I K Agwaisaid, said the convict committed an offence contrary to the provisions of Sections 6 and 8 (b) of the advance free fraud and other fraud-related offences Act 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act.
The prosecutor said in a plea bargain agreement, Edomwonyi pleaded guilty to the one-count charge of possession of fraudulent documents.

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