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Economy

Reps give CBN, AG six weeks to provide audit reports on TSA

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  • As More revelations emerge in Customs’ seizure of 1,580 arms

The House of Representatives has given the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Office of the Auditor General of the Federation (OAGF) six weeks to provide it with detailed reconciliation and audit reports of the amounts generated so far in the Treasury Single Account (TSA).

The House said it’s ultimatum was necessitated by the need to know the current and true status of the TSA going by reports that not all Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDA) have complied with the August 2015 directives of the Federal government on the policy.

The Abubakar Danburam-led ad-hoc committee investigating the status of the TSA said the November 10 deadline is sacrosanct, adding that all money banked in the country are not excluded as long as they have MDAs’ account with them.

The Committee held a closed door meeting with officials from the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation (OAGF), Auditor General’s office as well as CBN and some commercial banks.

According to the Chairman, the Committee was forced to take the decision following the revelation of the  Director of Funds, Accountant General’s office Alexander Adeyemi that there were still leakages in collecting funds from agencies despite the existence of TSA.

It would be recalled that the Committee was told last month that the TSA has not been audited by the office of the Auditor General since its inception two years ago.

In the meantime, more revelations have continued to trail Great James Oil and Gas Limited, the firm linked with the illegal importation of 1,580 guns into Nigeria.

On September 11, the men of the Nigeria Customs Service intercepted a 20-foot container at the Tin Can Island Port with 1,100 pump-action rifles concealed in wash basins.

Eight days after this discovery, another container was found at the Tin Can Island Port with 470 pump-action rifles concealed among small connecting pipes.

While addressing journalists on the seizure, the Comptroller General of Customs, Col. Hameed Ali (retd.), said the rifles were falsely declared as elbow plumbing plastics.

He named Great James Oil and Gas as the owner of the two containers and the firm that imported the 1,580 guns from Turkey into the country.

Ali had earlier hinted that the pump-action rifles were written under product description on the original bill of lading for the consignment, noting that the importer in connivance with the clearing agent had doctored the documents when they got to Nigeria.

Searches by our correspondent had uncovered a Standards Organisation of Nigeria Conformity Assessment Programme certificate issued to the importer.

The programme, involving a set of conformity assessment and verification procedures applicable to all products imported into Nigeria, was introduced in 2005 by the Federal Government to address the challenges of incessant influx of substandard and unsafe products into the country.

The scheme, it was learnt, was designed to ensure that imported products would meet the specifications of acceptable standards for the protection of Nigerian consumers from unsafe and substandard finished products.

The SONCAP certificate is a mandatory document required by the Customs for clearance of goods.

Our correspondent observed that the certificate with reference number IMP061711547S was issued to Great James Oil and Gas Limited for the importation of non-cellular strip, a chemical used as raw material in the manufacture of shoe soles.

The Head, SONCAP, SON, Frank Onyeji, confirmed that the certificate was issued in June.

The certificate listed the address of the importer as No. 1 Warehouse Road, Apapa, Lagos.

On a visit to the three-storey office complex in Apapa on Monday, our correspondent was told that there was no company called Great James Oil and Gas in the building.

The receptionist at the gate also insisted that the firm had never been an occupant of the building, which also houses a tax and logistics firm.

Reports have linked three men, Ayogu Cyril, Ayogu Kelvin and Ayogu Great James with the firm. They were said to have registered the firm as its directors on July 20, 2011 with a Corporate Affairs Commission registration certificate number RC 968675.

Nation with additional report from Punch

Economy

Unstable Economy: UK Firm Presents Solutions To Nigerian Business Leaders

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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, www.texem.co.uk, 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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Economy

Sanwo-Olu Urges Use of Innovative Technologies in Solving Challenges

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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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Economy

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

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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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