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Access Bank Unveils Second Edition Of Womenpreneur

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Leading financial institution, Access Bank Plc as part of its promise to continuously provide financial and business skills to female entrepreneurs, has unveiled the second edition of its Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton programme.

The Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton Africa 2020 Campaign is designed to provide female-owned businesses across Africa an opportunity to access to finance and world-class business trainings as well as mentoring opportunities. This programme has been designed to create an enabling environment for female entrepreneurs to grow their businesses.

Group Head, W Initiative, Access Bank, Ayona Trimnell, said;

“Access Bank has been a leading advocate for women’s economic empowerment in Nigeria and this is the key motivation for the ‘W’ Initiative which caters to the women economy particularly in the areas of capacity building and creating networking opportunities for women”.

“The Pitch-a-ton is an expansion of the Womenpreneur Business Workshop, under the bank’s women proposition, the W Initiative.”

“We launched the Pitch-a-ton initiative last year in line with our value proposition as the No. 1 Bank of Choice for women in Nigeria, and we got a tremendous amount of applications with innovative business ideas.”

“This year we want to do more and we want to reach out to more female entrepreneurs not just in Nigeria but across Africa.”

“As a responsible financial institution with huge presence in other African countries, we want to give the same opportunity to other female entrepreneurs in Ghana, Rwanda and Zambia as well as Sierra Leone, Mozambique, Gambia and Congo to apply and participate in this year’s edition of the programme.”

The Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton Africa 2020 will provide up to N9 million financial grant and a unique capacity building program aimed at empowering women entrepreneurs.

The programme is designed as a 3-month period incorporating pitching sessions and eight-weeks of mini-MBA training in collaboration with the IFC. Interested persons from Nigeria, Ghana, Zambia and Rwanda as well as with extension to Sierra Leone, Mozambique, Gambia and Congo who meet the criteria are required to fill an online application. The 500 candidates selected from this pool will then send in a 60 seconds video pitch which will be screened by a credible panel of business experts to select 50 finalists.

As part of the graduation requirements, the fifty finalists will pitch their businesses, infusing learnings from the mini-MBA and will stand an opportunity to win financial grants up to N5 million.

As a leading commercial bank in Nigeria, Access Bank has made significant investments aimed at enhancing growth in the Small and Medium-size Enterprise sector. The Bank is also a major advocate for women in business through innovative offerings like the W Power Loan, a discounted financing at 15% interest per annum, for women to grow their business as well as other Business Support Services.

The Womenpreneur Pitch-a-ton is the first women-in-business support initiative of its kind in the industry.

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Adeboye Sacks Top Redeemed Pastor For Sleeping With Member’s Wife

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The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) has sacked Pastor Gideon Bakare, a pastor in one of the Akure, Ondo state branches for trying to have a canal knowledge of a member’s wife.

In a statement, RCCG spokesperson Olaitan Olubiyi said Bakare was sacked for attempted adultery and for putting the church in a bad light.

The statement read;

“The Redeemed Christian Church of God has excommunicated Mr Gideon Bakare and relieved him of all ministerial duties in the Mission.

“Bakare, who was an Assistant Pastor in the Church was recently accused of attempted act of adultery with a woman in her matrimonial home in Akure, Ondo State.

“The Church dissociated itself from such immoral act of Mr Bakare and described it as being completely contrary to the core values, doctrines, beliefs and practices of the RCCG and the undiluted word of God.

“The Church, after reviewing the report of her investigation, noted that by his conduct, Bakare has not only tainted his personal reputation but has portrayed the Church in a bad light.

”Mr Bakare has therefore been directed to return all official items in his custody and stay off all associated connections with the Mission with immediate effect.”

A video showed Pastor Bakare naked in the bedroom of a married female church member in Akure over the weekend.

The woman had played along and pretended she was consenting to the sexual act and had asked the pastor to strip before inviting her husband and others to the scene

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DSS arrests EFCC Acting Chairman, Magu for ‘questioning’

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The Department of State Services (DSS) has arrested Ibrahim Magu, acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

TheCable understands that DSS operatives arrived the EFCC headquarters in Abuja Monday afternoon and quietly whisked him away without creating any scene.

His arrest comes a few days after Abubakar Malami, attorney-general of the federation (AGF), accused the anti-graft czar of gross infractions.

The AGF asked President Muhammadu Buhari to sack Magu over some “weighty” allegations, including the diversion of recovered loot.

In addition to allegedly re-looting the recovered loot, Malami accused the acting EFCC chairman of insubordination and misconduct.

TheCable learnt the EFCC chief travelled to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates without the authorisation of the president during the COVID-19 lockdown.

And when he was questioned, he said he went for an investigation.

He is also alleged to be living above his means.

In 2016, the senate declined to confirm the appointment of Magu as EFCC chairman after a DSS report indicted him of corruption.

The report read: “Magu is currently occupying a residence rented for N40m at N20m per annum. This accommodation was not paid [for] from the commission’s finances, but by one Umar Mohammed, air commodore retired, a questionable businessman who has subsequently been arrested by the secret service.

“For the furnishing of the residence, Magu enlisted the Federal Capital Development Authority to award a contract to Africa Energy, a company owned by the same Mohammed, to furnish the residence at the cost of N43m.”

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COURT JAILS UNION BANK HACKERS OVER N2.5BN FRAUD

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The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, Lagos Zonal office, has secured the conviction of one Abass Mohammed and a Bureau De Change, (BDC) operator, Ibrahim Saidu Jogal, who connived to hack into the Flexcube database of Union Bank and defrauded the bank of N2,550,000,000 (Two billion Five hundred and Fifty Million Naira).

The Commission received a petition alleging that fraudsters had hacked into the bank’s database and diverted the sum of N2,550,000,000. Investigation into the petition revealed that the said money was fraudulently credited into the accounts of mostly BDC operators, including one Jaxmine BDC, Gona BDC and Great Well Communication.

It was further revealed that Mohammed sourced for the account details of Jaxmine BDC from one of his friends, Lawal Ubah, who was a signatory to the account, and subsequently gave the details to one Salisu Liman (aka Zico), the ring leader of the syndicate. The sum of N450 million was then credited into the account.

Subsequently, the sum of N79 million was transferred from the account of Jaxmine BDC into the account of Digare BDC owned by Jogal for the purpose of buying $500,000. Further investigations revealed that Jogal only paid $80,000 to Mohammed and kept the balance of $420,000.

Jogal, investigations also revealed, said that he got information that the money was not genuine but fraudulent, thereby prompting Mohammed to open up to him that the money was stolen.

They were arraigned before Justice K.A. Jose of the State High Court sitting in Igbosere, Lagos on three-count charges bordering on conspiracy, retention and use of proceeds of crimunal conduct contrary to Section 331(1)(b) of the Criminal Laws No. 11, Vol 44 of Lagos State 2011.

They pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, paving the way for the commencement of their trial.

In proving its case against them, the EFCC presented three witnesses – Vincent Agwu, a Union Bank official, and two investigators, Joseph Nkeson and Aliyu Abubakar. Several documents were also tendered in court by the prosecution.

Delivering judgment, Justice Jose found the defendants guilty on counts two and three, and discharged them on count one, which bordered on conspiracy to defraud. Mohammed was sentenced to a term of one year in prison.

The trial judge further ordered that the sum of $37,000 and $7,000 recovered from him by the EFCC should be handed over to Union Bank, while the car recovered from him should be sold and the proceeds given to the bank.

Justice Jose observed that Jogal showed no contrition, and failed to pay back a substantial sum of the money traced to him. Subsequently, he was sentenced to a term of three years, and ordered to return the sum of $220,000 and another $200,000 earlier recovered from him by the EFCC to Union Bank.

The judge also ordered that his property, whose title documents he gave to the Commission, should be sold and the proceeds handed over to the bank.

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