Category Archives: Economy and Business

Why Central Bank Of Nigeria Official Website Was Hacked – Anonymous

Anonymous, an online network known for launching cyber-attacks against government institutions, has claimed responsibility for bringing down the website of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

The PUNCH reports that the move was taken in solidarity with the #EndSARS protesters.

According to the report, Anonymous retweeted a tweet by one of its affiliates, @loriansynaro, which read in part, “#Anonymous #OpNigeria #EndSARS #EndSarsNow. The Nigerian central bank website has been taken #Offline. https://cbn.gov.ng | TANGO DOWN.”

The website of Nigeria’s apex bank on Friday night displayed the message, “500 – Internal server error. There is a problem with the resource you are looking for, and it cannot be displayed.”

The Spokesman for the CBN, Isaac Okoroafor, could not be reached for comment on Friday as he did not respond to repeated calls.

Earlier, Anonymous had hacked the Twitter accounts of several government agencies including the National Broadcasting Commission which has in recent time been criticised for its highhandedness and stiff media regulations through its Broadcast Code which increased the fine for hate speech to N5 million.

The #EndSARS protests have been taking place across major cities in the country with youths demanding an end to police brutality and killings.

Major highways across the country have been blocked thereby grounding economic activities.

Nigeria: We Will Soon Reopen Land Borders – Says Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has disclosed that the federal government will soon reopen Nigeria’s land borders.

Speaking during a webinar organised by The Africa Report, Osinbajo said the federal government is working towards reopening the borders.

The webinar, which was themed “Bouncing back: Nigeria’s post-pandemic recovery plan”, focused on issues regarding government frameworks to be adopted towards economic recovery following the coronavirus pandemic which affected countries globally.

Reacting to a question on the continued closure of the land borders despite preparations for the implementation of the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA), the vice president said the government is working with neighbouring countries on the terms of reopening the border.

“We are working with our neighbours to see on what terms we would reopen those borders. At the moment, we are undertaking joint border patrols to control smuggling along the borders and we think it is working and I am sure that soon enough we should have the borders opened,” he said.

“We are committed to the AfCFTA but we are concerned about threats to security and the economy and we had to take certain actions that would satisfy the immediate needs of our country. It (border closure) certainly wasn’t meant to be permanent and we are looking forward to reopening as quickly as possible.”

Recall that the federal government had In October last year closed land borders to check the smuggling of goods and arms into the country.

Enugu Agribusiness Hub begin training youths on farm produce processing for the market+PHOTOS

The Enugu State Agribusiness Hub has held the September edition of its monthly Master Class Training Series for Agribusiness Strategic Development.

The Master Class began in August, shortly after the Covid-19 lockdown, and is largely designed to assist Enugu youths and investors find their feet in profitable agribusiness opportunities.

According to to a statement from the Office of the Special Adviser to the Governor on Agriculture, “Agribusiness puts food on tables of billions of people globally. It contributes a great percentage to the GDP of most nations on earth.

“Our mission is to organize this sector and make it attractive to the active youthful population of our nation such that a great number of entrepreneurs are born from the Agribusiness space”.

The programme which was held on Monday, 7th September 2020, at the old Sunrise Flour Mill, Emene Enugu, was attended by youth farmers and agricultural entrepreneurs.

Speaking to journalists, the Special Adviser to Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi on Agriculture, Engineer Michael Ogbuekwe described the programme as ‘Agribusiness, which involves the production of agricultural products, processing it, and packaging, and marketing’.

His words “The country as a whole is diversifying and moving into agriculture. The urban youths wonder why they should go back to the village to farm. Our job here is to show them the simple process of processing, packaging and marketing of agricultural products. Enugu State Government under the able leadership of Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi has set up this programme to sensitize the youths and mentor them to come into the agricultural sector.

“We have a target of 1000 people, and as it is now, every batch won’t exceed 50 people because of the COVID-19. But after this period when the rules are relaxed, we can increase it to 100 people per programme.

“It’s not just theory, but will involve hands-on practicals. They get to see for instance, the practical processing of rice, destoning, polishing, packaging. We are also teaching them that the can start from a humble beginning. You have garri around you already.

“You can start by packaging the garri. Same goes for rice. You can package just a kilogram, some families might just decide they want to buy for a Sunday. This way, students and youths will begin to see how they can make money for themselves”, he explained.

Also speaking, Mr Emeka Hyginus elaborated on simple ways of packaging farm produce.

Others who spoke at the event include Mr Sampson Nweke and Reverend Chinedu Nwoye.

Highlight of the programme was the practical session, where Mr Ejike Nnaji conducted the guests around the facility, explaining the diverse steps taken by farmers to process and package rice for the market.

Below are photos from the programme. Also follow the link https://youtu.be/8hV56NTPaFY to watch the programme on Jungle Journalist TV.

Don’t forget to subscribe to our channel, Jungle Journalist TV.

NIGERIA/GHANA: Retrace your steps for the sake of Africa, Edo Indigenes tells Ghana

Edo Progressive Indigenes Association, EPIA has appealed to Ghana to retrace its steps over the draconian laws its making against Nigerian business owners in the country.

EPIA said its high time Ghana president, Nana Akufo-Addo realize that whatever policies are made against Nigerians will breed bad blood and mess up the much needed unity of African nations and people in the long run.

The Ghanaian government had imposed a $1million levy on traders in the country, who are mainly Nigerians, claiming that its action was due to the border closure policy of the Nigerian government.

Ghanaian Foreign Minister, Honorable Shirley Ayorkor Botchway had cited the border closure policy by President Buhari as having very badly affected the revenues of Ghanaian exporters.

But in reaction to the policies EPIA founder and Edo indigenous leader, Chief Bishop J.O.E Edokpolo stated that this is not good for Africa, while addressing newsmen in Benin City.

He said “We expected Ghana president to be civilized, given his past speeches and presentations. It’s sad that he has a disunity mindset. The act of levying such a huge tax on Nigerian businessmen is condemnable. Should there be anything Africans should expect, he should show leadership qualities.

“We expected him to be an African leader. We call on him not as Nigerians alone but as African Indigenes to please stay away from his discriminatory and condemnable act. What he is doing is not different from what apartheid government did-marginalization, oppression, and this is doom for Africa.

“Nigerian leadership and Ghana must come together now and know where each has erred and retrace their steps. We must return to our brotherliness as soon as possible. Ghana and Nigeria must play a good role as leaders and show example”, the Edo leader advised.

APAPA GRIDLOCK: FG Agrees To Move Cargo By Barges To Onitsha

Heads of maritime agencies in Nigeria have agreed to work on modalities for the movement of cargo by barges from Lagos Ports to Onitsha in Anambra State so as to ease traffic in Apapa.

Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Bashir Jamoh, disclosed this at a recent meeting of all heads of maritime agencies in Lagos.

Mr. Jamoh said the meeting constituted a committee to produce a work plan for the 24-hour port system, and agreed to carry communities around the port environments along in order to ensure safe operations within the port vicinities and beyond.

“Our focus is also to ensure containers are moved by barges to dry ports outside the port environments. All these would help in the efficiency and effectiveness of our ports.”

Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Hadiza Bala Usman, also emphasised the need for an intermodal transport system in and around the port environments.

She said Nigeria must prioritise intermodal transportation to reap the benefits of shipping and port activities.

Hadiza Usman said the heads of maritime agencies agreed to work with the Nigerian Railway Corporation (NRC) to facilitate movement of cargo from the ports by rail.

Managing Director of National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA), Dr. George Moghalu, said safety formed a major part of the discussion.

We’re Not Leaving Nigeria: ShopRite Debunks Exit Rumours

Africa’s biggest grocery retailer ShopRite has debunked rumors making the rounds that they’re quitting Nigeria. The news broke during the early hours of Monday, August 2nd stating that ShopRite was packing up operations within the country.

This development was attributed to a sharp plummet in sales, resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic.

However, Shoprite Nigeria has now refuted the information, saying there is no truth in it. In a phone conversation with Vanguard, the country director for Chastex Consult, Ini Archibong, in a telephone conversation with Vanguard, said:

“We have only just opened to Nigerian investors which we have also been talking to just before now. We are not leaving, who leaves over a $30billion investment and close shop? It doesn’t sound right. We only just given this opportunity to Nigeria investors to come in and also help drive our expansion plan in Nigeria. So we are not leaving.”

I have tried to say this as too many people as I can. There should be no panic at all and all of that. There is no truth in that report”.

In a now circulating statement from ShopRite Holding, the company had said it was changing its model of business and hinted at quitting its operations in Nigeria.

Part of the statement read:

“Following approaches from various potential investors, and in line with our re-evaluation of the group’s operating model, in Nigeria, the Board has decided to initiate a formal process to consider the potential sale of all, or a majority stake, in Retail Supermarkets Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of Shoprite International Limited,” the company said in a statement”.

The news was greeted with distress from Nigerians as many are already grappling with unemployment and suspected exit may leave a staggering vacuum.

Breaking: Shoprite says its done with Nigeria, announces plans to leave

South African retail giant Shoprite has announced it is leaving Nigeria 15 years after it began operation in Africa’s most populous country.

In a statement on Monday, the Cape Town-based retailer said it has commenced a formal process to consider the potential sale of all or a majority stake in its supermarkets in Nigeria.

The company said the results for the year do not reflect any of their operations in Nigeria as it will be classified as discontinued operation.

“Following approaches from various potential investors, and in line with our re-evaluation of the group’s operating model in Nigeria, the board has decided to initiate a formal process to consider the potential sale of all, or a majority stake, in Retail Supermarkets Nigeria Limited, a subsidiary of Shoprite International Limited. As such, Retail Supermarkets Nigeria Limited may be classified a discontinued operation when Shoprite reports its result for the year,” the statement read.

International supermarkets (excluding Nigeria) contributed 11.6 per cent to group sales, and reported 1.4 per cent decline in sales from 2018.

South African operations contributed 78 per cent of overall sales and saw 8.7 per cent rise for the year.

Due to the coronavirus-induced lockdown, customer visits declined 7.4 per cent but the average basket spend increased by 18.4 per cent.

South African retailers have struggled in the Nigerian market and most recently Mr Price exited the market after Woolworths did the same six years ago.

CHINESE LOANS: Buhari must apologise to  Nigerians- Atiku Media Office

Former vice-president Atiku Abubakar’s position on Nigeria’s foreign debt has been vindicated and President Buhari must apologise to him and Nigerians.

The Atiku Media Office made the demand in a statement Sunday.

The statement was entitled: Loans: Buhari, APC Owe Nigerians An Apology:

Please Read:

Two months ago, the former Vice President of Nigeria and PDP Presidential candidate in the 2019 election, Atiku Abubakar patriotically called the attention of the country to the reality of reckless borrowing by the present APC administration and how the terms of those loans could compromise the future of the country.

Expectedly, some managers of the party and even the government denied the allegations that he raised and also discount the warning for caution.

But, regrettably, just last week, a cabinet minister confirmed our fears.

Now, we all are aware that Nigeria’s sovereignty may have been traded for foreign loans and God forbids our inability to service those loans, the lender country would take ownership of choice infrastructure on the Nigerian soil. No negotiation could be weaker than that!

Nigeria had a total foreign debt stock of $7.02 billion on May 29, 2015. Today, our foreign debt is $23 billion and rapidly rising. Debt, by itself, is not a bad thing. But debt budgeted for such unproductive ventures, like the proposed $500 million upgrade of the Nigerian Television Authority and other sundry bogus contracts, is debt that leads to death. To trade Nigeria’s sovereignty for this type of profligacy is the height of irresponsibility!

Atiku Abubakar has long advocated for a more robust engagement of the private sector and promotion of foreign direct investment as sustainable alternatives through which government could fund infrastructure development.

But on the contrary, the Nigerian government under the banner of the All Progressives Congress threaded the direction of looking for cheap foreign loans in exchange for the sovereignty for Nigeria.

Recall that former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration initiated a National Privatization Programme with the sole objective of ensuring that the private sector took some measure of influence in social investment portfolio and, in some instances, provided funding for infrastructure development.

There was nothing in that plan that traded Nigeria’s sovereignty for some cheap loans which, in the light of unfolding revelations of sleaze in some departments of government, would have ended in private pockets.

The government of the day and the APC must apologize to Nigerians and make an admittance of guilt for taking the country through the throes of subjugation to another country.

Aba Automated Shoe Factory, Best In Nigeria – Technical Partner

The Technical Partner of the Aba Automated Shoe Factory, Mr Osaro Ekonweren, has described the Aba Automated Shoe Factory as currently having the most updated shoe producing machines in the country.Mr. Ekonweren said this yesterday in an exclusive interview immediately after the inauguration of the Board of the Company by Governor Okezie Ikpeazu.According to the Technical Partner, “we were amazed and impressed by what we saw on ground. Our group has been into shoe production in Nigeria for over a decade now and I must confess that the machines we saw there when we went on inspection cannot be found anywhere in the country. We use machines in our own company but we have is no where near what is at the Aba Shoe Factory”.Mr. Ekonweren said that at present, the factory has an installed capacity for the production of 5000 pairs of shoes every day which translates to about 2 million pairs of shoes annually, with facilities for expansion and assured that they plan to actually expand this capacity within the next one year.He saluted the foresight of Governor Ikpeazu and confirmed that the factory will change the face of shoe production in Nigeria.He said that his organization was selected as Technical Partners for the factory based on a proven and verifiable track record of quality automated shoe production spanning over 10 years. He stated that they make shoes for companies like PEP of South Africa and several others, assuring that the products from the Aba factory will be well received by the markets. According to him, products from this factory will not just be for the local market here but will be sold across West Africa and beyond.He assured that the factory will be run as a professional and commercial outfit with clear opportunities for value addition and job creation.On when actual production will commence at the factory, he assured that they will start test runs in the next two weeks while they will start production by the second week of September. He made it clear that by December this year, shoes from the factory would have gained ground in the local and international markets. He also stated that the factory will also produce other leather works like bags, belts, wallets, etc.Also speaking, the Executive Director, Operations of the Factory, Mr Chinenye Nwaogu said that with the new management structure in place, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu has sent a clear message that the factory will be run solely on a basis of professionalism inspired by commercial expediency. He said that the 30 shoe makers who were sent to China by the Governor for training on the use of machines in shoe production will form the initial technical staff of the factory while there will be huge emphasis on training for more operators.Mr Nwaogu said that the apparent delay in the start of production at the factory was because the Governor insisted that a professional organization must be found to run the place and the process took some time, coupled with the pandemic of COVID-19 which shut down the country for about three months.The Governor inaugurated the Board of the Factory yesterday and gave them a clear mandate to raise the bar and cement the place of Abia State as the powerhouse of leather works in Nigeria and West Africa. The Board has Mr. Mark Atasie, a Management Consultant as Chairman.More photos:

How NNPC Staff Sold 48 Million Barrels Of Stolen Crude Oil, Issued Death Threats To Whistleblower

Facts have emerged on how some Nigerian Government officials and senior Nigerian National Petroleum Corporations staff connived to sell 48 million barrels of Bonny Light crude oil stolen from the country during the first year of President Muhammadu Buhari’s first term in office in 2015.

The stolen crude was moved to China where it was stored in various ports and terminals including Sinochem tanks in Zhoushan bonded area and Vishal star tanks.

Potential buyers were from that point contacted for the stolen product by the Nigerian Government officials including a company that eventually blew the whistle on the monumental fraud.

Realising that the crude was stolen, SAMANO SA DE CV brought to the Nigerian Government’s attention the criminal activity involving the NNPC, according to documents seen by SaharaReporters.

Group Managing Director of the NNPC, Mr Mele Kyari, late Chief of Staff to President Buhari, Abba Kyari, and Mr Umar Mohammed were all promptly notified of the stolen crude in order to take appropriate action.

However, a letter written by the whistleblower to the President was prevented from getting to him by Mohammed.

In October 2015, the stolen crude was moved from China without the knowledge of President Buhari and sold illegally by some government and NNPC officials with the proceeds not remitted to the government’s coffers.

When the whistleblower pushed for its agreed five per cent cut of the sale of the crude for exposing the theft, its officials were harassed and issued death threats.

Several efforts for compensation by the whistleblower continues to be frustrated by government officials, who were part of the illegal deal and economic sabotage.

The whistleblower in a letter by its lawyer, Gboyega Oyewole of Lord and Temple, a United Kingdom-based law firm, dated July 23, 2020 to the NNPC GMD has demanded for the company’s compensation for helping to expose the criminal activity.

The whistleblower policy, an anti-corruption programme launched in 2016 by the Nigerian Government, encourages individuals to report cases of financial mismanagement or stolen funds in return for a share of the recovered item if the information provided turns out to be credible.

The letter reads, “Our client was approached by a group in the Peoples’ Republic of Chinas with the intent to sell 48 million barrels of Bonny Light Crude Oil believed to have been stolen from the Federal Republic of Nigeria and stored in various ports and terminals in China.

“It was revealed to our client that the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporations authorised certain companies to sell the stolen product.

“It was agreed that an investigation into the stolen products should be made to ascertain the veracity of the information and gather more facts as to the fraudulent activities. It was also agreed that if the information is found credible, the perpetrators of the offensive will be apprehended and that compensation due to our client for the information so brought forward will be awarded.

“In October 2015, our client got wind of the fact that the stolen products were being moved from their location in China by the Nigerian Government in calculated steps to recover the said products. Our client then caused a letter to be written to Mr Mele Kyari, through Mr. Marco Ramirez, offering to legally purchase the said products from the Nigerian Government if available for sale.

“Our client through its representative subsequently wrote to Mr Umar Mohammed clarifying its intention to the criminal activity in respect to the stolen products and not to make illegal purchases of the same.

“To date, our client has unfortunately not received any form of compensation for the information provided to the Nigerian Government in respect of the stolen products and or response to its offer to legally purchase the same when recovered.

“The upright act of reporting the criminal activity to appropriate quarters was not protected by the expected confidential nature of the policy, thereby exposing officials of our client to serious consequences including threat to life.”

The whistleblower’s lawyer further revealed that Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, and former Director-General of the Department of State Services, Lawal Daura, were contacted to help get its compensation but nothing tangible surfaced.

The company has now threatened to take legal action against the NNPC if after 14 days from the date of the receipt of the letter the demand was not met.

Sahara Reporters