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Obasanjo Laments Level Of Poverty Under Jonathan’s Govt

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Olusegun Obasanjo, yesterday lamented the state of poverty under the President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration, saying the middle class has been destroyed by the economic situation.
According to the former president, “A distress text message received by me from a Nigerian requesting for financial assistance clearly indicated that the middle class era has been destroyed by the economic situation.”
Obasanjo likened the present state of the economy to the one witnessed under the military junta headed by the late General Sani Abacha.

The former president, who addressed a group of traders who were on a courtesy visit to his Abeokuta residence, read the Save Our Soul (SOS) message he (Obasanjo) received to the traders, saying: “I told him (the text message sender) that we have experienced this period during the time of Abacha, all the middle class was completely destroyed.”
He said the development notwithstanding, the situation did not change his conviction that “tough time do not last forever, and when tough times come, tough people get going. We will keep going and we will survive this tough time.”
Obasanjo narrated the story of a military personnel who could not afford to buy a brand new car, which he said was a surprise to him.
“I was surprised the day a colonel in the army came to me, complaining that he and his family could not afford to buy a car,” he said.
He also gave another example about a medical doctor’s family that had to relocate to the Arabian country to survive.
“A friend of mine, Dr. Okoro, a medical doctor, his wife was also a medical doctor and they have a daughter who is a medical doctor too. Between the three of them, they could not afford a new car, they had to go to Saudi Arabia. But I pray we will not have such a time in Nigeria,” he said.
While responding to the request of the traders on the way forward especially ahead of the 2015 political dispensation, he said Nigerians have to be alert and vigilant on the situation.
He said: “We have to be at alert. To be forewarned is to be fore armed, if we will get ourselves out of the morals we find ourselves in, it has to be done by each and every one of us.

“We all have contribution to make and should not leave our responsibility on others to do. If we fail to participate in things that are meaningfully positive for this country, you will be a victim and we all become victims.”
Obasanjo said as far as the next political dispensation is concerned, he could not decide yet, resorting on spiritual guidance for help.
He said: “As for me, we don’t know where we are going yet, may God show us the way. The way that will take this country and make it a great one, and when, for me, I understand and I see the way, I will tell you. I pray that God will show me the way, may God show you the way.”

However, leader of the delegation and National President of the Nigerian Market/Traders Council, Mrs. Funsho Osho, said the visit was meant to get the direction of the former president on the 2015 elections.
She said the council had tremendous support from the former president during his eight year rule “as such, we deem it necessary and as a mark of respect to come and find out on which direction we are going.”

This Day.

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Union Bank, WACOT Rice Kick Off Financial Inclusion Drive for Smallholder Farmers in Kebbi

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As part of Union Bank’s commitment to driving financial inclusion in Nigeria, the Bank has partnered with WACOT Rice Limited – a rice processing company, to financially include 6,000 local farmers including youth and women in Kebbi State.
The Kebbi Financial Inclusion Drive (KFID) which will cover four Local Government Areas – Argungu, Augie, Suru, and Dandi – is a critical part of WACOT’s Argungu Outgrower Expansion Project funded by United States Agency for International Development (USAID) West Africa Trade Hub. This program is set to resolve the overwhelming financial inclusion deficit within rural communities in Kebbi.
The financial inclusion initiative is being implemented with technical support from National Identity Management Commission (NIMC), to help the farmers acquire the relevant documentation and identification required to open bank accounts.
Union Bank will facilitate account opening and expand its agency banking network to cover the areas while supporting its agents on ground with digital banking solutions to enable seamless transacting and account management.
Farouk Gumel, Chairman WACOT and Board Chair, Union Bank was on ground in Kebbi State to kick-off the drive and paid a visit to the Kebbi state Governor, Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu to discuss expanding the programme state-wide.
In his recent keynote address at the recently concluded and  Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria (CIBN) Conference, Mr. Gumel said:
 “As we work towards achieving financial inclusion to reach the unbanked, we must commit the same resources and investments to rural-local customers as we have done to urban-global clients to help create the growth that will lift us all to collective prosperity.”
WACOT Rice is a subsidiary of TGI Group. TGI Group, through another of its subsidiary Titan Trust Bank, recently acquired Union Bank in a landmark transaction which was announced in 2021.

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FIRSTBANK PARTNERS VERVE INTERNATIONAL, MAKES CUSTOMERS MILLIONAIRES IN THE FIRSTBANK VERVE CARD PROMO

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In partnership with FirstBank – Nigeria’s premier and leading financial inclusion services provider – Verve International, Africa’s leading payment technology and card business, has launched its third National Consumer promo designed to reward users of FirstBank verve card with exciting gifts and cash prizes to appreciate their patronage and use of the card to carry-out their electronic banking transactions.

The ongoing 2-month promo will end on 30 October 2022 as 20 customers (10 customers per month) with the highest transaction count during the promo will be made millionaires, winning the sum of N1 million each. Also, N20,000 will be won by 25 customers monthly.

On the other hand, 2620 FirstBank verve cardholders that double their transactions every week, stand a chance to enjoy 10% cashback capped at N2,000 per customer.

Speaking on the promo Chuma Ezirim, Group Executive, e-Business & Retail Products, FirstBank said “we appreciate our partnership with Verve Card through the years; a partnership of empowerment and opportunities which include growing the economy, supporting new businesses and preventing unemployment. FirstBank verve card holders are encouraged to keep using their cards as it is a card offering that promotes safe, convenient and rewarding digital banking experience with 20 customers standing a chance to be millionaires at the end of the promo.”

Verve card is a secure debit card that allows cardholders to conveniently meet their daily financial needs such as payment for goods and services, airtime recharge, bill payments, funds transfer, etc. Verve card is accepted across all ATMs, POS, Web and Mobile Platforms in Nigeria.

The promo is also opened to new verve cardholders as non-verve cardholders are encouraged to visit the nearest FirstBank branch today to pick up a Verve card and start getting rewarded!

Only recently, FirstBank – in partnership with Verve – rewarded over 2601 FirstBank verve cardholders with various prizes; including N20,000 cash prize, N10,000 cash prize, N10,000 worth of airtime; power generating sets, refrigerator, cooking gas, smart TV and the grand prize of a brand-new car to a lucky winner.

 

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Federal Government Orders University Vice-Chancellors To Reopen Schools, Begin Lectures Amid 7 Months Lecturers’ Strike

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The government issued the directive through the National Universities Commission (NUC), and a letter signed by its Director, Finance and Accounts, Sam Onazi, on behalf of the Executive Secretary of the commission, Professor Abubakar Rasheed.

The Nigerian government has directed vice-chancellors to re-open universities and allow students to resume lectures immediately.

The government issued the directive through the National Universities Commission (NUC), and a letter signed by its Director, Finance and Accounts, Sam Onazi, on behalf of the Executive Secretary of the commission, Professor Abubakar Rasheed.

 

The letter which The PUNCH obtained on Monday, was reportedly addressed to all vice-chancellors; Pro-Chancellors and chairmen of governing councils of federal universities.

 

“Ensure that ASUU members immediately resume/commence lectures; Restore the daily activities and routines of the various University campuses,” the letter partly reads.

We had reported that the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN), on Wednesday, September 21, 2022, ordered the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) to call off its ongoing nationwide strike.

 

It reported that the umbrella body of the lecturers in public universities had declared a warning strike on February 14, to force the Nigerian Government to implement agreements it earlier signed with the union.

 

The agreement stipulated how university education would be funded for better improvement.

 

The strike has since rolled over and is now in its seventh month following the government’s failure to implement all the agreements.

 

Several meetings between ASUU and the Federal Government have ended in a deadlock.

 

Consequently, the Federal Government went to court to challenge the strike.

 

The government through its counsel, James Igwe, prayed the court for an interlocutory injunction restraining ASUU from taking further steps as regards the strike, pending the determination of the substantive suit.

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