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Journalists Gear up for 9th Nigerian Breweries Golden Pen Awards



Journalists Gear up for 9th Nigerian Breweries Golden Pen Awards

By Dipo Olowookere

All seems to be set for the ninth edition of the Nigerian Breweries Plc Golden Pen Awards slated for Friday, October 6, 2017.

The event, aimed at rewarding media excellence, will take place at the Zinnia Hall of Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.

At the ceremony, journalists who distinguished themselves in different areas would be rewarded in three categories.

The subject areas include on published reports on Agriculture, Local Sourcing and Industrial Development in 2016.

Nigerian Breweries said over 250 entries were received from journalists when submission closed for this year’s award.

‘The Nigerian Breweries Golden Pen Reporter of the Year’ will be rewarded with a special statuette and N2 million, the first runner up in the same category will get a special statuette and N1 million, while the second runner up will receive a special statuette and N750,000.

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In the ‘Nigerian Breweries Golden Pen Photojournalist of the Year’ category, the winner will be honoured with a special statuette and N1 million, the first runner up will receive a special statuette and N750,000 while the second runner up will get N500,000.

For the ‘Nigerian Breweries Golden Pen Report of the Year’, the category reserved for reports on Nigerian Breweries and its brands throughout the preceding year, the winner will receive a special statuette and N1 million. The three top place winners will each also receive a high-end work tool part of their prizes.

Commenting on the awards, Corporate Affairs Adviser of the Nigerian Breweries Plc, Mr Kufre Ekanem, said the company chose Agriculture, Local Sourcing and Industrial Development, as the theme for this year’s edition to help direct attention towards the potential of the country to become a self-reliant and prosperous nation.

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“As the agenda setters, we believe that the media has a vital role to play in directing the attention of key stakeholders to the role that agriculture, local sourcing and industrial development can play towards the nation’s economic recovery.

“We are of the opinion that given the huge natural resource potential of our country, it is vital to drive backward integration with a focus on these areas to make our country prosperous,” Mr Ekanem said.

The company added that the award criteria of quality, professionalism and objectivity will remain the filters upon which entries will be shortlisted for the awards.

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An independent judging panel scored the reports and photographs for their originality, news value, use of resources, credibility and factuality.

Other areas of interest for the panel included info-graphics, lay out/headline, clarity and social impact.

Nigerian Breweries Plc inaugurated the Golden Pen Awards to promote professional and objective reportage of events in Nigeria.

Since its inception, it has produced eight grand prize winners in the ‘Nigerian Breweries Golden Pen Reporter of the Year’ category seven winners in the ‘Nigeria Breweries Golden Pen Photo Journalist of the Year’ category, three in the ‘Nigerian Breweries Report of the Year’ category as well as several runners up.

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan. Mr Olowookere can be reached via

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Swiss Business School Honours Monument Distillers CEO



Godwin Oche Monument Distillers

By Ashemiriogwa Emmanuel

Mr Godwin Oche, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Monument Distillers Nigeria Limited (MDN), has been awarded an honorary doctorate by the Swiss School of Business and Management, Geneva.

The Swiss faculty confirmed that the laurel was in recognition of his huge contributions to the development of the African manufacturing ecosystem and for his technological innovations.

In his acceptance speech, Mr Oche appreciated the institution and MDN for the recognition and honour.

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“Few things have made me more proud and more grateful for my journey than this humbling recognition of my contributions to business and manufacturing by the esteemed Swiss School of Business and Management. I am truly honoured. Most especially, I am grateful.

“I am grateful to my wife and family for their dependable support through the years, to Monument Distillers for giving me the platform to shine, to our customers for their tremendous loyalty and support, and most especially to the good Lord who has blessed me with far more than I ever dreamed,” he said.

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Mr Oche is a Chemical Engineer and holder of a Postgraduate Diploma (PGD) in Business Administration and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in marketing from the Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUTECH).

He is a fellow of the Institute of Management Consultant (FIMC), a member of the Nigeria Institute of Marketing (MNIM), and also a member of the Nigeria Institute of Personnel Management (MIPM).

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MDN is a fast-rising wine and spirit company that produces a wide range of global and local brands such as John Bannermans Scotch Whisky, 1960Rootz Bitters, 4 Horses Bitters, Les Damier Wine range and so much more.

The company also has distribution rights to brands such as Four Cousins Wines, Sazerac Southern Comfort Bourbon and other ranges of spirits. The company offers a broad range of collections for all occasions.

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Kano Forex Trader in Trouble Over N197m



Kano Forex Trader

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

A foreign exchange (forex) trader based in Kano State, Mr Yusuf Yakubu, may have bitten more than he can chew as he has found himself in murky water.

He was accused of diverting about N197.6 million belonging to his customers, who wanted him to exchange his Dollars to Naira.

It was alleged that in January 2021, the Kano forex trader collected $870,000 with the promise to pay the Naira equivalent, but he refused to fully honour this pledge.

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Instead of returning the full amount, he only paid N220.3 million and allegedly diverted the balance of N197.6 million and efforts to make him pay were futile.

As a result, a petition was filed to the Kano Zonal Command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), which waded into the matter.

After interrogations, Mr Yakubu was arraigned before Justice Sanusi Ma’aji of the Kano State High Court on August 4, 2021, on a one-count charge of misappropriation.

“That Yakubu Yusuf on or about January 14, 2021, within the jurisdiction of this court, with intent to defraud dishonestly misappropriated the sum of N149,000,000 belonging to Oliver Ogokumaka and Obumnemi Okoli and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 308 and punishable under section 309 of the Penal Code,” the charge read.

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When the charge was read to him, the defendant pleaded not guilty, which prompted the prosecution counsel, Mr Musa Isah, to ask for a trial date.

However, counsel for the defendant, Mr Abdul Adamu, informed the court that he had filed a motion challenging the jurisdiction of the court and the judge consequently adjourned the matter till August 18 for argument on the motion.

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Meanwhile, the defendant was granted bail in the sum of N50 million and two sureties in like sum, one of who must be a relative of the accused person and both must also be resident of Kano, with verified business addresses.

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Stanbic IBTC Revamps Abeokuta BTI Correctional Centre



Stanbic IBTC Holdings

By Ashemiriogwa Emmanuel

A top financial institution, Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc, through the Stanbic IBTC Finance Team, has reconstructed the vocational centre at Borstal Training Institute (BTI) located in Abeokuta, Ogun State.

The BTI is an arm of the Nigerian Correctional Service where young offenders are remanded and given both educational and vocational training, used to be a deteriorated structure with very few tools.

The poor facility was not able to live up to the purpose of the institute in terms of equipping students with education and skill acquisition.

However, the intervention of the Stanbic IBTC Staff Volunteerism Initiative saw a complete overhauling of the Abeokuta BTI Correctional Centre to encourage the purpose as to which the BTI was built.

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The reconstruction entailed the demolition of the existing dilapidated shed, construction of a new building which was demarcated into four segments, along with the establishment of an Information and Communications Technology (ICT) unit equipped with six desktop computers.

In addition, a tailoring section was also set up and provided with four sewing machines, a stitching machine, several tailoring tools, and fabrics for practice.

There was also a barbing section which was supplied with three clippers, a sterilising machine, and other necessary barbing tools.

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The renovation also entailed the establishment of a carpentry section equipped with necessary equipment such as a drilling machine, spraying machine, and circular machine.

The water supply channel was also improved with an overhead water tank for the facility.

In his statement on the project, the Chief Executive, Stanbic IBTC Holdings, Mr Demola Sogunle, pointed out that the provision of these necessary facilities will encourage easy reintegration of the students into the society as it will equip them with digital and vocational skills.

“I believe that this project will directly impact the lives of these young Nigerians. It enhances their easy integration into society as they are already equipped with either digital or vocational skills, based on their preference.

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“Upon release, they will not be idle but will hopefully put the skills they have acquired to good use,” he said.

The reconstructed BTI vocational centre which houses about 330 students will now have about 182 of them engaged in school and computer skill acquisition, and 148 students equipped with vocational training.

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