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THE ELEGUSHI FAMILIES SPEAKS ON THE DEATH OF THE 2 UNILAG STUDENTS…

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Contrary to the story making the rounds about the death of the two university of Lagos students, Funmi Odusina, and Sola Ogunmefun at the Elegushi private beach in Lagos, the families of the Elegushi and the management of the beach have finally spoken and affirm the real story and how the incident really happened.
Speaking to Journalists about the sad incident, head of the Elegushi family Chief moroof Adisa Sunny Elegushi, the olisa of ikate land confirmed that the students did not die at the beach as reported by the media.  “They did not die at the beach, they were rescued by the life guard’s personnel and were rushed to the hospital before they were later confirmed dead at the hospital” the Olisa told us.
Expressing the families stand about the very sad occurrence, the family head said further that he would like the people of Lagos and the general public to know that the Elegushi families are law abiding citizens and would never do anything contrary to the laws of the land. “We want the people of Lagos and the general public to know that we the Elegushi families are law abiding citizens and we would not do anything above the laws of the land irrespective of the situation, but on this case, man proposes and God disposes.

PRINCE OLANREWAJU ELEGUSHI (MIDDLE)
Our further investigation also confirmed that the Elegushi families have been in touch with the families of the diseased since the ugly incident contrary to what was earlier reported. We gathered reliably that the families of the Elegushi kingdom even attended the burial rites of the diseased students days ago, showing that they were in all means responsible and stood by the challenges as it happened.
Speaking on the burial ceremony, the Olisa of Ikate, also affirmed that they were all present at the burial rite and commiserate with the families of the late students.
“We attended the burial of the students and the families were happy to see us there, as they were never thinking we ignored the diseased and show  ‘I don’t care’ attitude, and till now we are still in touch with the families”.
We gathered further that even though the management of the beach warned the visitors on the day the ugly incident happened, that the water was not showing familiarity considering the weather and wave of the day, the students ignored all the warnings and still went ahead to swim, haven seen the red flag that showed the sign of danger in the water zone.

SECOND LEFT: PRINCE OLANREWAJU, 3RD RIGHT CHIEF MOROOF SUNNY ELEGUSHI, AND THE WHITE CAP CHIEFS.

A beach expert who spoke to Society reporters confirmed that the sign of the red flag is a sign of danger which signifies that no one can go closer to the beach once flagged, but this was not the case on this very day, as the students ignored that warning of the guards at the beach.
The Lisa also told us that while the birthday party was going on, the students decided to swim in the very heavy waved water after the flagged warning, and that was what led to the incident.
Looking at the antecedent of the Elegushi beach, over the years there have never been any report of such incident at the private beach before this occurrence.
Speaking on this, the Asiwaju of Ikate Land, prince Olanrewaju Elegushi told us that this is happening for the first time, and this has also given a sign of warning to avoid future occurrence and also making them to tighten up the security and gaudiness of the beach to avoid any future occurrence of this nature.
“Our resolution is very simple and professional, investigations are still ongoing while we are assisting the government agencies to discover the reason and how the whole thing all happened, and we are sure of telling the general public the whole situation report after the investigation”. We have also constituted a committee to to develop a framework to improve on safety and security on the beach. The beach is currently closed and when we reopen we would ensure that these new recommendations by the committee are put in place. To us safety is important and be rest assured that we have taken lessons from this unfortunate incident

Speaking further on the early report as alleged by some quarters of the media, he confirmed to us that the earlier reported story was false as the students were not confirmed dead at the beach after their rescue they were rushed to the nearest hospital, and that was where they were confirmed dead by the attendants which is open to confirm.

“The students didn’t die at the beach, we have numerous life guards at the beach, who are always on a horse ride, considering the stretch of the beach, and when the incident happened they jumped into the beach to rescue the students, after the rescue the normal first aid was carried out which could be confirmed by the eye witness, and upon their arrival at the hospital, the doctors confirmed their demise which was so painful to the management of the beach”.
Speaking further on their resolution of the occurrence, the Asiwaju of Ikate land, Prince Olanrewaju Elegushi told us that they have organized a committee who is overseeing the situation of the incident and in due time the result would be relayed to the general public showing their responsibility as a family.
As the time of filing this report, the Elegushi of Ikate Land, Oba Saheed Elegushi was not in town as this is the Ramadan period and he is presently at the hajj, where he is observing the Ramadan soliciting to God for peace and harmony for his people.
But the families assured us of getting back to us to get his own submission of the occurrence even though he was not too happy about the situation that claimed the life of the diseased students.
We will continue our investigation and definitely update our readers of the outcome of the whole situation.

Sunday Adebayo (Who was at the palace Of The Elegushi, in Ikate, Lekki Lagos).

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Tunji Ojo Has No Case To Answer” – Shehu Sanni 

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Former Kaduna Central Senator, Shehu Sani, says Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, has no case to answer regarding the contract awarded to a company linked to him by suspended Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Betta Edu.

Sani, in a chat with The Whistler, said Tunji-Ojo did not violate any public service law since he resigned from the company years ago.

 

” It could have been a conflict of interest if he hadn’t resigned.

The senator further said it is “not his ministry (that awarded contracts), and companies have the right to pursue businesses anywhere.

“Edu’s case is very clear and can’t be equated with that of a company associated with Hon Ojo.

“Legally, he can’t be held to account on this matter.

“Let’s not be distracted,” Sani said.

“The extant provision of the law under the 1999 Constitution is that anybody who is a public servant cannot engage in any business other than farming,” said Nelson Kebordih, a senior lawyer whose interest is in public policy.

He said the implication of the law is “that a person must be in active control and directorship of the company in the management of any enterprise.

“You are permitted to own shares because owning a share does not put you in the day-to-day management of the company or any enterprise.

“If he (Tunji-Ojo) has resigned from being a director, the law does not stop him from owning shares in the company,” he stated.

The former lawmaker’s position aligns with the 2008 Federal Service Rules on Chapter 4 which states that “Public officers are not prohibited from holding shares in both public and private companies operating in Nigeria or abroad except that they must not be Directors in private companies, and may only be Directors in public companies if nominated by Government.”

 

Following the suspension and quizzing of Edu, concerning alleged financial sleaze, the Minister of Interior has come under pressure to resign or equally be suspended by the president after it emerged that his company, New Planet Project Ltd, also received a contract from Edu.

Edu had awarded some companies contracts, some of which were unregistered with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) raising concern of fraud and illegality.

Tunji-Ojo is also being pressured to step down with many commentators saying he has flouted the Public Service Rules which barred public servants from being awarded contracts or contracting any business except farming.

But the Minister while speaking on television explained that he had resigned since 2009 from the company.

“Almost five years ago, I resigned as director of the company, so I’m not a director. I resigned on 1st of February, 2009, you can take that to the bank,” the minister had said.

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‘The Coleman Wires and Cables Business Story is a Journey From Grass to Grace’

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On the sidelines of the 12th Practical Nigerian Content (PNC) organized by the Nigeria Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), Mr. George Onafowokan, the Managing Director/CEO of Coleman Technical Industries Limited, a leading Nigerian brand manufacturer of wires and cables, shared secrets to his business success amid recent national and global economic challenges. Onafowokan maintains that as a Nigerian, one can start a small business and grow organically into a big global competitor…..

 

What do you mean when you said Coleman Wires and Cable’s story is one of “grass to grace”?

 

Coleman Wires and Cable was registered as a company in 1975, but we began as a small-scale business in 1996. In 2021, we had to restructure our operations to overcome the setbacks we faced from the beginning, and that’s when I became the Managing Director.

Our story is one of grassroots to grace. Through investing time and effort over the years, we were able to systematically grow from a micro-small company into a small, medium, large, and extremely large company in terms of size. Our business vision started small, but we strategically expanded it. Please note, our aim was not to become the largest company, but it began with the goal of being the preferred wires and cable choice for Nigerians in terms of quality.

Subsequently. we found that every Nigerian preferred locally made cables over the foreign imported ones. So, the question of why we can’t build a company capable of servicing the entire nation and the global market arose; with this, our vision expanded. We progressed from a humble factory to a ripple plant that became the largest in West Africa at the time it was built. Starting out from 20,000 square meters, we expanded to 30,000 square meters and further into the Shagamu plant, which began with over 100,000 and has grown to over 350,000 square meters today.

We diversified into other products, such as high-voltage cables, and we became the first in the country and in West Africa. This achievement made Nigeria the fifth country in the world to produce such cables. Today, more than fifty percent of Coleman’s products are not produced by any other company in Nigeria, West Africa, and most parts of sub-Saharan Africa. This accomplishment is a testament to the story developed by a predominantly 99 percent Nigerian team. It illustrates that it is possible to be Nigerian and organically grow into a global competitor.

Could you provide some insight into your personal background for the readers?

Certainly! I am George Onafowokan, the second generation of the Onafowokan family, born into the distinguished lineage of Asiwaju Solomon Kayode Onafowokan. He is currently the second Asiwaju of Remo, succeeding Chief Obafemi Awolowo, and is well-regarded as a business mogul. Personally, I am a family man with a spouse and children.

I pursued my first degree in Accounting and Finance in the UK, followed by a postgraduate degree in Information and Management. With a penchant for improving processes and a dedication to giving back, I often find myself engrossed in thoughts on how to enhance various aspects of life.

Having witnessed the success of companies I’ve mentored in Nigeria, I am committed to building the capacity of individuals and small to medium-scale businesses. My guiding principle, which I consider my calling, is to contribute to the growth and improvement of others over time.

Reflecting on my upbringing, my father’s journey serves as a true “grass to grace” story. From humble beginnings in a one-bedroom apartment, he worked his way up to become well-educated and stand out among his peers. However, my perspective evolved when, at the age of twelve, my aunt imparted valuable advice. She encouraged me to cease complaining and adopt the mindset that my parents served as vessels for me to enter the world. Once in the world, their responsibility concluded. Embracing this philosophy, I no longer felt entitled to my parents’ resources and committed to earning everything I needed. This mentality shaped my life principle—I don’t expect anyone to owe me anything. Consequently, I work diligently, understanding that neither a “yes” nor a “no” signifies offense or entitlement.

 

Was Coleman Wires and Cables your first business?

No, Coleman was not my first business; it is a family business. I started my own business when I was young. At the age of sixteen, I ventured into my first wine business. By the time I completed university, I had my own business in the UK, specializing in financing and exporting to Nigeria using containers. My initial entry into the cable business involved supplying raw materials, and coincidentally, one of my main clients was Coleman.

You spoke about replicating yourself; how can one access mentorship opportunities from you?

 

I am one of those who don’t believe that you can run a business as a one-man show. Therefore, you have to build human capacity in every way, integrate it into your structure, empower the people around you, and let them handle their responsibilities. Personally, I have built a team around what I do. I started in a business where I handled every department myself, but today, I am not involved in those tasks anymore.

Most importantly, I empower them to effectively perform their jobs and give them a sense of belonging, so they feel that their contributions have value.

In many companies in Nigeria, you often find that the Managing Director or CEOs are the only individuals making decisions, while the rest are mere yes-ma or yes-sir. I wouldn’t run a business that way.

Are there mentorship opportunities for people outside your current team?

No, we have not fully structured it for everyone; we currently have a limited number, mostly for individuals already in the industry. However, from my work with the LCCI mentoring group and my team, I have found that what most people generally need is a simple understanding and mentoring to discover what aspects of their life or history they could improve upon or learn from.

What has Coleman been doing with the NCDMB?

For us, we are a success story of the Nigeria Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) because we have been working with the board since 2017. Prior to that, in 2008, I met with Senator Lee Maeba, who led the private bill for the local content law before it became an act in 2010. I could see the passion in the man when he talked about the whole idea, and from that passion, we took action. “Taking action” means we started putting our money where our mouth is, began examining areas in the law that affect business and expanding capacity, and we have succeeded in doing so. Over the years, it has been challenging to break into these oil and gas companies, but we have managed to do so. We primarily supply cables to their vendors, without handling any installation. We supply for NLNG projects, Shell, and Mobile. We have been able to provide cables that have never been produced by any other company in Nigeria.

 

In the face of business and economic setbacks, Coleman expanded. What did you do differently?

First, I think we took a strategic position to ensure our ability to continue operations. Second, we minimized our losses and restructured our capacity. One month before the Covid-19 shutdown, we had submitted a request for restructuring with our banks. We had slowed down, scrutinized all our positions, and had already started reducing the size of our business. By the time we entered the Covid-19 pandemic, we operated with the same number of staff for about a year. After Covid-19 started easing, we increased the number of staff. Therefore, we were somewhat prepared for Covid-19, and over the years in our business, we had already trained specific capacity. During Covid-19, we were able to build two factories without anyone coming from abroad. Covid-19 has, in a way, compelled everyone to enhance their in-country capacity.

In your panel discussion, you mentioned that the NCDMB should replicate the success in the petroleum industry in manufacturing. So, in concrete terms, what are you looking for to happen?

 

Replicating success in manufacturing means being intentional with manufacturers, ensuring that they perform well because there are not a lot of manufacturers. We need to be more deliberate, encourage more factories, open more businesses here, and manufacture goods instead of just assembling them. That is the focus I am emphasizing. There should be a deliberate action to build local capacity.

 

What is the future for Coleman?

 

The future for Coleman is still very bright. The opportunities have not stopped. We have two or three projects that are still ongoing, which will be finished by the first quarter of next year. The copper and aluminum factories are underway, the fiber-2 project, the expansion and completion of the Shagamu project, and our power project to increase our capacity from 16 to 24 megawatts. We are also looking to supply around West and Central Africa going forward in the next year, and later on, in East Africa. Our export plan is quite extensive, and we hope to see significant figures coming out of it, apart from Nigeria.

I believe we need to trust in the opportunities that abound in Nigeria, and in time, we are all going to reap the benefits. Regardless of the situation, Nigeria still finds its way to continue growing; and if given peace and the chance by the government, we would most likely see an upward swing in businesses by 2025.

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EFCC arraigns couple for alleged N500m fraud

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The Port Harcourt Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission has arraigned a couple, Emmanuel Dike and Ugochi Eziaku Dike, for an alleged N500 million investment scam.

This was disclosed in a statement posted on the official X handle of the EFCC on Thursday evening.

According to the statement, the couple was arraigned alongside their company, Dike & Phil Associates Ltd, on Wednesday, November 29, by the EFCC on five-count charges bordering on conspiracy, obtaining money under false pretence and criminal conversion of funds to personal use.

One of the charges read, “That you Ugochi Eziaku Dike, Emmanuel Dike, Dike & Phil Associates Ltd; Kelechi Chigozirim Ahiawe (still at large), and Ampletech Integrated Services Ltd, sometime between the 24th day of August, 2020 and 15th day of February, 2021, at Port Harcourt within the jurisdiction of this honourable court with intent to defraud obtained the sum of Five Hundred Million Naira only from one Captain Chukwuemeka Stanley Ikeri, a Nigerian citizen and his company- Clipboard Office Superstores Limited, under the pretext that it was for investment purposes that will yield him 10% interest, which you all claimed to have the capability to deliver to him, which pretext you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1(1) (b) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1(3) of the same Act”.

The statement further read that the couple pleaded not guilty to the charges read to them.

In view of their pleas, prosecution counsel Dr. B. Ubi, prayed the court for a trial date, while counsel to the defendants, J. C. Okeke, informed the court of his application for the bail of the first and second defendants. He prayed the court to grant the defendants bail to enable them prepare for trial.

Justice Ajoku granted the defendants bail in the sum of one million Naira each, with two sureties in like sum.

The defendants were remanded in the Port Harcourt Correctional Service pending the perfection of their bail conditions, and the matter was adjourned to January 30, 2024 for commencement of trial.

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