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Banking sector well positioned to support monetary, fiscal recovery efforts, says Emefiele



Banking sector well positioned to support monetary, fiscal recovery efforts, says Emefiele

Mr Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), said on Tuesday that the measures put in place by the apex bank to prevent economic crisis spilling into a financial crisis in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic had paid-up.

Emefiele made the assertion at a 14th Annual hybrid banking and finance conference organised by the Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) under the theme: “Economic Recovery, Inclusion and Transformation: The Role of Banking and Finance.”

According to him, key indicators in the banking sector continued to reflect that the banking sector remained strong , resilient and healthy.

“To prevent an economic crisis from spilling into a financial crisis the CBN worked to protect the interest of depositors by ensuring that banks made adequate capital provisions to cover for unexpected loses.

”We also enabled banks to restructure their loans granted to individuals and businesses significantly affected by the pandemic.

“Our Banks also demonstrated exceptional resilience by putting in place business continuity plans, alongside deployment of digital channels, which ensured that the provision of financial services to customers was not disrupted by the COVID-19 Pandemic.

“We are delighted that these measures have paid -up; indeed key indicators in the banking sector continued to reflect that our banking sector remains strong , resilient and healthy.

“Capital and liquidity ratio in the banking sector has remained above the prudential limit of 15.5 and 41.3 per cent respectively.

“Our non performing ratio in the banking industry in July 2021, stood at 5.4 per cent, reflecting continued improvement from 6 per cent in Sept. 2020,” Emefiele said.

He added that the banking sector remained well positioned to support the recovery efforts of the monetary and fiscal authorities.

“Clearly, Nigeria’s banks have become not only strong and resilient but have also carved a good niche in the world to consolidate on the growth and resilience of the banks in the last decades”, he added.

Also read: NGX opens week negative, down by N3bn

The apex bank governor disclosed that in the next 12 months, the CBN would be establishing the Nigerian International Financial Centre (NIFC), that would act as an international gateway for capital and investment, driven by a technology payment system infrastructure.

This new financial hub, according to him, would enable local and international banks become global champions.

“The NIFC will be a 24/7 financial centre that will complement London, New York and Singapore financial centres and enable acceleration of our home grown initiatives such as the infraco Plc, the N15 trillion infrastructural fund, which we hope will be launched in Oct. 2021.

“The NIFC will also complement our initiatives on the Nigeria commodity exchange and the National Arts Theatre creative hub for our youths, as well as our e-naira project, which is also expected to debut in Oct. 2021.

Similarly, ”the NIFC will take advantage of our existing laws, such as the BOFIA 2020, and other Central Bank regulations, to create a fully global and investment financial hub where monies, ideas and technology will move freely without any hindrance,” Emefiele said.

The Governor of Lagos State, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, said he expected that after the COVID-19 pandemic, the banking industry would play a transformational role such as what was witnessed seven decades ago by more than 40 countries.

“The theme for this conference is very apt just as the world grapples with a very dangerous coronavirus pandemic. The banking industry, no doubt has played a significant role in the economic recovery that we are seeing today

But, let me take us back to about six to seven decades ago, precisely July 1994, when more than 40 countries assembled at the now historic conference in the U.S to establish the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, as financial institutions, to help the world at that time and Europe after a second World War.

“These financial institutions were set up to rebuild and to recover from the devastation of that war. Loans were given to countries in Europe and in other parts to rebuild after that war.

” This is the kind of a transformational role that the Nigerian banking system is expected to play, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu added that recent data from the CBN had indicated that it had disbursed over N400 billion to over 650, 000 households as soft loans, to help them cope with the impact of the pandemic.

This is apart from the combined hundreds of billions that had been dedicated to various sectors, including manufacturing healthcare, aviation, tourism and other critical sectors of the economy.

He commended the apex bank for taking the lead and setting a good example for the entire country, and President Muhammadu Buhari for also setting up a taskforce that worked with all States and helped to address and attack the pandemic.

Earlier, Dr Bayo Olugbemi, CIBN President, recognised the fact that the banking industry had more work to do to bring the economy back to good shape.

“You will recall that several initiatives have been implemented by the current administration via its various agencies, including the Central Bank of Nigeria, over the past years to guide the economy back unto the path of recovery.

“Year-on-year, we have gone on a contraction of 6 per cent in GDP growth in the Second Quarter of 2020, to a 5 per cent growth in the second Quarter of 2021.

“While this progress is laudable and worthy of celebration, we recognise that there is more work to be done. There are macro-economic issues which threaten to block the road to prosperity, such as high inflation and unemployment rate.

” There is also work to be done to ensure we meet targets regarding financial inclusion, infrastructure development, MSME growth and female equality, ” Olugbemi said.

Newsmen also report that this year’s conference was different from the norm, as a special focus was placed on the youths, the Millennials, with the specific aim of delivering solutions that would drive economic recovery, inclusion and transformation of Nigeria’s economy for higher growth.

The two-day conference, an annual event for stakeholders in the banking and finance ecosystem, brought together policy makers, regulators, operators, top government functionaries at all levels, captains of industries, managing directors of banks and other financial institutions, among others.

President Muhammadu Buhari declared open the conference, while President Paul Kagame of the Republic of Rwanda, gave the keynote address, the first by a Foreign president.



Unstable Economy: UK Firm Presents Solutions To Nigerian Business Leaders



SOAN Inaugurates New Leadership, Boosting Hopes Of Crushable Inflation

Nigerian business leaders are to benefit from the programme of United Kingdom-based leadership development organisation TEXEM UK on how to win despite the exodus of staff, very high inflation and turbulent operating landscape.

TEXEM’s Director of Special Projects, Caroline Lucas, said on the organisation’s website,, that the programme with the theme “Strategies for Sustainable Organisational Success” is slated for April 24 and April 25 in Lagos.

According to Lucas, in today’s volatile and disruptive business landscape, organisations face numerous strategic challenges.

“TEXEM’s programme, “Strategies for Sustainable Organisational Success,” offers tailored solutions to address these pressing issues.

“Senior leaders grappling with skyrocketing costs, high currency risks, and disruptive technologies require practical insights and tools to navigate uncertainty effectively.

“This programme provides actionable strategies for sustainable success amidst turbulent times,” she said.

Lucas asserts that exceptional crisis management skills are essential in the face of staff exodus and geopolitical disruptions.

“TEXEM equips participants with the necessary leadership capabilities to lead through crises, ensuring organisational excellence even amidst adversity.

“Innovation becomes imperative in turbulent waters.

“TEXEM’s programme fosters a culture of innovation and provides guidance on harnessing adversity as a catalyst for profitable growth,” she said.

According to her, participants will learn to turn challenges into opportunities, driving sustained profitability.

Lucas said resilience and effective risk management are crucial in today’s volatile landscape.

She said through interactive sessions and case studies, TEXEM helps senior leaders develop unshakable qualities, enabling them to navigate uncertainty and confidently mitigate risks.

“Optimizing resource utilisation is paramount amidst soaring costs.

“TEXEM offers insights on managing resources efficiently, ensuring optimal impact even amidst cost pressures. Decisive problem-solving is paramount.

“TEXEM enhances participants’ decision-making capabilities through peer learning and observation practice, empowering them to make better decisions that drive organisational success,” Lucas said.

She said that beyond the curriculum, networking opportunities with industry peers enrich the learning experience, abound.

“Professional exchange provides valuable insights into different approaches to overcoming challenges, enhancing overall learning and impact.

“TEXEM’s programme aims to develop leadership strategies for optimum performance in an era of uncertainty.

“By helping participants understand how to manage and deploy resources more efficiently, it equips them with the skills needed to thrive in turbulent times,” Lucas said.

Saying that adversity is the mother of innovation, she added that TEXEM empowers individuals and organisations to thrive in volatile times, fostering innovation and sustained profitability.

“At the end of the programme, participants can expect to develop leadership skills for better decision-making and possess survival skills to navigate crises effectively.

“Through its comprehensive approach and proven methodology, TEXEM ensures participants unlock their potential, foster innovation, and drive sustained profitability in today’s challenging environment,” Lucas said.

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Sanwo-Olu Urges Use of Innovative Technologies in Solving Challenges



Sanwo-Olu Urges Use of Innovative Technologies in Solving Challenges

Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State has called for the use of innovative technologies in resolving the economic and social challenges of the country.

Sanwo-Olu said this on Wednesday during the pioneer graduation of the Lateef Jakande Leadership Academy (LJLA) at Konga Place in Lekki.

He said that the new platform of globalisation and Internet of things must be significantly employed to resolve new challenges encountered in the course of improving the living standards of citizens.

30 students, 15 men and 15 women, between 18 and 35 years, graduated from the academy after a one-year course and mentorship in leadership.

The Lagos Leadership Summit (LLS) is a pivotal platform dedicated to empowering Nigeria’s young professionals with the skills and insights essential for success in various leadership roles.

With a focus on leadership excellence, ethical governance, and youth inclusion in governance, the summit offers a unique opportunity for participants to engage with renowned leaders and industry experts.

” You have to be able to innovate for us, you are here as leaders of not tomorrow but today. Proffer solutions that the government can use as a tool, to solve the challenges that we are facing today but more importantly to solve global issues.

“And that is why we started the Lateef Jakande Leadership Academy. For us as a government, we felt how well can we honour a man than for us in public sector to set up a cream of new leaders.

“So we set up this school that has the first set, the one-year fellowship, who indeed have not only shown us that we took the right step, they have been outstanding individuals,” the governor said.

The guest speaker and former governor of Lagos State, Babatunde Fashola, noted that it was important for followers to trust their leaders for a successful outcome.

“The people need to trust the government, they must know the capability of their leaders so that when issues beyond human expectations happen, the followers can show empathy to the plight of their leaders.

” I have always been an advocate that believes that the process is as important as the result, the end shouldn’t justify the means, the process is crucial, it serves as a blueprint for others coming behind,” he said.

Similarly, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, Deputy Governor, who spoke on “Leadership And Community Engagement”, stated that to achieve effective leadership in Nigeria, there was the need to navigate complex political, economic and social landscapes.

Hamzat urged the citizens to be involved in governance while stressing the need for collaborations with private stakeholders and the public sector.

According to him, community engagement with government at all levels is pivotal to the nation’s development.

In her address, Mrs Ayisat Agbaje-Okunade, LIJA’s Executive Secretary, noted that the challenges faced required leaders who are not only capable but compassionate, visionary, and adaptable.

According to her, leadership must transcend rhetoric and manifest tangible outcomes.

“We need leaders who inspire confidence, foster unity, and drive transformation.”

Agbaje-Okunade urged the participants to embrace the responsibility that comes with leadership and pave the way for a generation of new leaders.

The keynote speaker, Mr Abubakar Suleiman, Chief Executive Officer, Sterling Bank, said that leadership is about leading people on a new purposeful journey.

Suleiman said being a strategic thinker and a transformational leader was what makes leadership different from management, adding that the future is being crafted in leadership.

“In essence, as a leader, you must be able to lead people to the future hence, you must be convincing for people to be bold to follow you, able to trust and believe in you.

“For one to be a leader, the people must be able to believe and trust you to take them to the future where you have never been to,” he said.

Also speaking, Mr Tunbosun Alake, Commissioner, Innovation, Science and Technology, stressed that leadership had nothing to do with being young or old but having good values and character.

The commissioner advised the participants to pursue excellence in their various career paths to succeed in life.

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Eid-el-Fitr: Tinubu Urges Sacrifice, Integrity For National Rebirth



Eid-el-Fitr: Tinubu urges sacrifice, integrity for national rebirth

 President Bola Tinubu has urged Nigerians to continue to make sacrifices and exhibit integrity for national development.

Tinubu said this after observing the Eid-el-Fitr prayer at the Eid Ground at Dodon Barracks on Wednesday in Lagos.

The President also called on Nigerians to continue to have faith in his government and remain patriotic citizens.

Tinubu said that the Renewed Hope Agenda of his administration, aimed at bringing prosperity to Nigerians, was being diligently implemented.

Encouraging Muslims to extend the values of sacrifice and resilience beyond the fasting period, Tinubu emphasised the need for Nigerians to prioritise the exhibition of love for their country.

‘’The resilience and sacrifice that we have shown and made during these months should be preserved.

“Be a kind and cheerful giver. We must love our country more than any other country because this is the only one we have.

‘’We must continue to protect the integrity of our government and leadership. The Renewed Hope Agenda is alive, well and fine, and Nigerians should continue to be very hopeful. Without hope, there is no salvation.

“Without hope, there is no development. Without hope, there is no life. Eid Mubarak,’’ the President said at the end of the prayers led by the Chief Imam of Lagos State, Sheikh Sulaiman Abou-Nolla.

Earlier in his sermon, the Chief Imam urged Nigerians to shun all acts of violence, ensure peaceful co-existence, and continue to have faith in the country.

He asked those in leadership positions to remain faithful to their oaths of office and work towards alleviating the suffering of the less privileged.

‘‘Let us not forget our brothers and sisters in Gaza and other areas of conflict,’’ the Chief Imam said.

He offered prayers of God’s guidance, wisdom, and protection for the President and the Lagos State government, as well as for peace and stability in the country.

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