Adeboye’s Exit: Buhari Sacks Jim Obazee of FRCN
By Dipo Olowookere
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday approved the immediate reconstitution of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRCN) headed by Mr Jim Obazee.
Mr Obazee has been in the eye of the storm since last Saturday when leader of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Enoch Adeboye, announced he was stepping down for Pastor Joseph Obayemi to lead the church in Nigeria because of a new law in the country.
Pastor Adeboye, who was addressing the church Ministers at a programme held at the Redemption Camp in Ogun State, said Mr Obazee’s FRCN emphasised that no leader of a religious body in Nigeria can spend more than 20 years in the position.
Since the cleric’s announcement to his stunned Ministers, including Nigeria’s Vice President, Mr Yemi Osinbajo, it has caused heated arguments on social media.
But on Monday, the President approved the removal of Mr Obazee as the Executive Secretary of the council and appointed Mr Daniel Asapokhai as his replacement.
Mr Asopokhai, according to a statement issued by Mr Buhari’s spokesman, Mr Garba Shehu, is a partner and a Financial Reporting Specialist at the PricewaterHouseCoopers (PWC), Nigeria. He is a product of the University of Lagos and the University of Pretoria.
Also, the President appointed Mr Adedotun Sulaiman as Chairman FRCN.
Mr Sulaiman was a former Managing Partner/Director of Arthur Anderson and later, Accenture. He is a Chartered Accountant and a product of the University of Lagos and Harvard Business School.
Meanwhile, President Buhari has instructed the Minister of Industry, Trade, and Investment to invite the 19 ministries, departments and agencies of the Federal Government and private sector organizations specified in the FRC Act to nominate members of the board of the council.
Tinubu Travelled Abroad to Rest, Will Return Soon–Aide
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The office of the president-elect has confirmed that Mr Bola Tinubu has jetted out of Nigeria for a rest in the United Kingdom and France ahead of his swearing-in ceremony slated for May 29, 2023.
An online platform on Wednesday reported that the winner of the February 25 presidential election travelled to Europe for urgent medical attention.
But in a statement issued by one of his aides, Mr Tunde Rahman, it was emphasized that the former Governor of Lagos State only left the country to have a rest in London and Paris before going to Saudi Arabia for lesser hajj.
It was disclosed that Mr Tinubu travelled out of Nigeria on Tuesday night via the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) Ikeja Lagos.
“After a very exhaustive campaign and election season, President-elect, Asíwájú Bola Tinubu, has travelled abroad to rest and plan his transition programme ahead of May 29, 2023 inauguration.
“The President-elect left the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja, for Europe on Tuesday night.
“The President-elect decided to take a break after the hectic campaign and election season to rest in Paris and London, preparatory to going to Saudi Arabia for Umrah (Lesser Hajj) and the Ramadan Fasting that begins Thursday.
“While away, the President-elect will also use the opportunity to plan his transition programme.
“He is expected back in the country soon.
“We enjoin the media to stop publishing rumours and unsubstantiated claims and to always seek clarifications from our office,” the statement said.
INEC Declares Labour Party’s Alex Otti Abia Governor-Elect
By Modupe Gbadeyanka
The candidate of the Labour Party in the governorship election in Abia State, Mr Alex Otti, has been declared as the winner of the exercise by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The former banker polled a total of 175,467 votes to defeat his closest rival in the poll, Mr Okey Ahiwe of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), who garnered 88,529 votes.
The Abia State governorship election was earlier declared inconclusive by the electoral umpire due to issues arising from over-voting. The collation centre had to be moved to Abuja from Umuahia, the state capital.
The governor-elect, in a short post via his verified Twitter handle, reacted to the development by saying, “See what the Lord has done.”
Mr Otti left the banking industry a few years ago after serving as the managing director of the defunct Diamond Bank, which merged with Access Bank. He left his office in the bank to pursue his political ambition in 2015, but he failed until he succeeded in 2023.
Cash Scarcity: NLC Orders Workers to Embark on Strike
By Adedapo Adesanya
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has directed public sector workers in the country to embark on strike beginning from Wednesday, March 29, 2023.
President of the union, Mr Joe Ajaero, gave this directive at a media briefing at Labour House in Abuja on Wednesday, March 22.
He also directed affiliate unions of the NLC to be on standby for a picketing exercise across all branches of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) nationwide.
The union leader said the directive became imperative following the expiration of a one-week ultimatum given to the apex bank to make cash available for Nigerians.
The scarcity has heightened with plans by the central bank to mop up the old Naira in circulation. The apex bank recently said it had removed N2.3 trillion from circulation between October 2022 and February 2023 while printing fewer new notes.
Business Post reported that between October last year and February 2023, the cash in circulation dropped to N982.09 billion from N3.29 trillion.
This is one of the factors that has extended the scarcity of the Naira and have also prolonged it into March.
Despite the Supreme Court judgement on March 3, 2023, that the old Naira remain legal until December 31, 2023, new notes have not reached many households with the old notes and new notes difficult to acquire.
With the cash in circulation dropping and the currency in commercial banks’ vaults or that of the CBN rising, Nigerians still find it difficult to access the money deposited in their accounts despite the ruling that the new and old notes should co-exist for 10 months.
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