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Jumia Food MD in Police Net Over Fraud

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Jumia Food MD in Police Net Over Fraud

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Managing Director of Jumia Food, Mr Guy Futi, has found himself making efforts to explain to the Nigeria Police Force how his company did not defraud one of its vendors, Castle Logistics Services Limited.

Castle Logistics Services Limited, a logistics services providing company, had written a petition to the police alleging that Jumia Food fraudulently diverted and converted funds it was meant to pay for services rendered to the subsidiary of Africa’s leading e-commerce company.

In order to get a clearer picture of the allegations, the police questioned Mr Futi on what he knows about the issue at hand.

According to reports, a member of the anti-fraud unit, Mr Adewumi Adegoke, who confirmed the arrest of the Jumia Food chief, said a case of diversion of funds running into millions of naira was lodged against Jumia Food and Guy Futi by Castle Logistics.

“I can confirm that the Managing Director of Jumia Food was arrested and is in our custody. Investigations are ongoing on the allegations levelled against him and the company,” Mr Adekoge was quoted as saying.

But spokesman of Jumia, Mr Olukayode Kolawole, denied that Mr Futi was arrested. He stressed that Mr Futi only honoured an invitation sent to him by the police.

He also said, “Jumia Food MD neither misappropriated the company’s funds nor converted them for personal use.

“If this had happened, Jumia would have taken a legal action against him and probably involved the press. I say, unequivocally, that Jumia Food MD was never involved in any fraudulent act.

“If truly this happened, why would Jumia cover up for him? Is an outside source more credible to tell an alleged story of fraud within Jumia than the company management? Again, there’s no basis for hiding an employee’s fraudulent act if truly the employee committed such act.

“Jumia has an outstanding court case against a vendor (3PL) partner, who owes the company and has refused to pay. It is on the basis of the court case filed against the vendor that Jumia Food MD, Guy Futi, was invited by the police for questioning.

“Guy Futi was never detained by the police. He was invited for questioning and left the station after the interrogation same day. The police should provide a physical evidence of him in detention or else the information you were supplied with was completely false and has a malicious intent.

“A visit to the supposed station where he’s alleged to be waiting for bail will add so much credibility to your story.

“Guy Futi had not joined Jumia as an employee at the time the vendor’s debts started accumulating. He’s barely new at Jumia Food. The allegations are completely untrue and appear to be a cheap effort by a third party to distract the public from the main issue and malign Jumia’s image.”

Castle Logistics, in a petition dated December 24, 2018 by one Mrs Catherine Azubuike, to Nigerian Police, Zone II, Lagos, had alleged false presence, fraudulent conversion and diversion of N214.695 milion by Jumia Food.

The petitioner alleged that they entered into a Service Level Agreement in August 2016, wherein they were to provide personnel services and equipment to Jumia Food for delivery of food supply requests made online by its customers, adding that it also involves the collection of monies and consequent remittance of same to Jumia.

It was alleged that on May 2018, Jumia was said to have been able to pay for only August 2016 to March 2018, and fell short of the payment of N214,695,445.49, and upon a thorough investigation into the payment collection system, they found out that Jumia, without Castle’s consent and permission, gave to some of the riders Jumia Food’s personal POS for collection of payments from customers, and effectively those payments were rendered directly into Jumia Food designated accounts, adding that Jumia stole and converted the said sum for own use.

According to the petition, Castle demanded Jumia Food to provide it with complete bank reports of the transactions on those POS machines, but Jumia refused.

It read: “Jumia Food refused, but rather chose to randomly estimate a percentage of the total funds received from those POS machines as funds related to orders handled by Castle. This resulted in huge monthly shortfalls on orders handled by Castle and Jumia Food kept demanding Castle to remit funds for those shortfalls without providing the POS reports.”

Castle also alleged that further findings showed diversion of funds and Jumia deceived them into remitting funds to its bank account with clear intention to permanently deprive them of its use.

Modupe Gbadeyanka is a fast-rising journalist with Business Post Nigeria. Her passion for journalism is amazing. She is willing to learn more with a view to becoming one of the best pen-pushers in Nigeria. Her role models are the duo of CNN's Richard Quest and Christiane Amanpour.

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Heifer Gathers Stakeholders to Discuss Youth Empowerment

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Youth Empowerment Agric

By Ashemiriogwa Emmanuel

Agribusiness firm, Heifer Nigeria, in partnership with the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), will hold a youth empowerment programme on Tuesday, October 26, 2021.

The event is mainly to gather stakeholders in the agriculture sector to discuss how youth could be given the necessary support to succeed in the industry.

The program, which is themed Youth and Technology: The Future of Africa’s Agriculture, will also serve as an avenue for key players to examine the various roles of youth and technology in the transformation and future of Nigeria’s agriculture.

It will be held for two days at Transcorp Hilton, Abuja, and is in line with the 27th edition of the Nigerian Economic Summit (NES#27) tagged Securing Our Future: The Fierce Urgency of Now.

Speaking on the scheduled event, the Country Director, Heifer Nigeria, Mr Rufus Idris, noted that agriculture in Africa greatly relies on the shoulder of the youths which is in need of enhanced innovation to allow for a sustainable farming system among Africans.

“Heifer International is committed to supporting a business ecosystem that enables youths to drive innovation in the sector, growing their incomes through sustainable and scalable food, and farming practices.

“Leveraging technology and modern practices will create a pathway for Nigeria to increase productivity and competitiveness of the agricultural sector to curb food insecurity and poverty,” he averred.

According to the company, agriculture already accounts for about 35 per cent of employment in Nigeria, making the sector mature enough for innovation to become a major domestic employer.

Hence, the program will be an interactive session where youth innovators, incubators, farmers and agribusinesses, government agencies, and investors will converge to come up with innovative solutions with the potential of scaling Nigeria’s agricultural sector and strengthening food security across the nation.

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Fashola Tasks States to Prioritize Housing Challenges

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housing challenges

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has called on state governments to renew their commitment to housing development in order to increase access to affordable housing to the citizenry.

Mr Fashola made the call in his keynote address at the meeting of the States’ Commissioners responsible for housing matters during the 10th Meeting of the National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development held in Lagos State.

Speaking at the event themed Housing Development as a Catalyst for Job Creation, Social Inclusion and Economic Development, he explained that the inequality among the nations and people can be reduced drastically if the housing need of the poor is considerably addressed in the states.

“These are some of the reasons why I seek to persuade all of you to go back to your states to persuade your Governors to re-commit to housing development.

“I said re-commit because I am aware that many states are doing something, but you will agree that there is a scope to improve and scale-up.

“One reason why this will require an All of Government Action is the fact that land is a critical component of capital formation and it is controlled by the states.

“I am persuaded that appropriate, targeted and purposeful use of lands, such as for the development of housing by the states and private sector, will unleash prosperity in all states that aggregate to national prosperity,” Mr Fashola explained.

The Minister gave an example of Lagos State days of Lateef Jakande and added that the present Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu remained an example of what state governments could do to deepen housing supply and reap the benefits that come with it.

Mr Fashola stated that land and housing was a sub-national matter of jurisdictions, pointing out that what the states do to facilitate the processing of land titles, documentation, Certificate of Occupancy and other Geographic Information Services (GIS) details would go a long way in facilitating easy housing delivery.

He informed the meeting that the federal government was undertaking a National Housing Programme in 34 states aggregating to about 5,000 housing units, and trying to complete an inherited ministerial pilot housing scheme across the states which had a little over 6,000 units.

Mr Fashola said the decisions to recommit to housing development by state governments would facilitate the creation of a variety of jobs because the services of various professionals in the built industry such as town planners, architects would be required.

”Artisans like masons, plumbers, carpenters and food vendors will not be left out of the value chain of prosperity resulting from economic development.

“When construction actively starts, the economic explosion happens, supplies of sand, cement, reinforcements, roofing, plumbing, painting, and other components get to work.

“This drives a critical business in all our states, the micro small and medium enterprises who make or supply these building components,“ he said.

In the same vein, he explained that the Federal Housing Authority and Federal Mortgage Bank are also intervening as federal agencies in respective housing development directly through cooperative societies and the provision of development loans and mortgage loans.

In his remarks, Governor Sanwo-Olu, while assuring participants at the council of implementing the recommendations of the meeting, disclosed that the state had begun to implement the commendations agreed on at the 9th National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development.

On making land available for building by providing lands to build a mini-city at Imota in Ikorodu Division of Lagos State.

He said the state would develop about 3,500 housing units of 2 and 3 bedrooms in phases for civil servants and those in the informal sector, who fall within the category of low-income earners and to be acquired at a single-digit interest rate mortgage plan that could span a period of 15 years.

He added that his administration was determined to develop decent homes within the states as well as meet the housing needs of the citizens irrespective of their location.

Mr Sanwo-Olu, who said that homeownership was a vital tool for taking people out of poverty, assured the council that Lagos State would collaborate with the private sector to adopt the monthly rent payment as proposed by the Minister of Works and Housing.

In his vote of thanks, the Permanent Secretary, FMWH, Mr Babangida Hussaini, commended the excellent leadership of the works and housing sectors.

He also noted the commitment of council members to the 10th Meeting of the National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development and urged them to go back and implement the council resolutions.

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Group Reports Lagos Government to Buhari

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Shangisha Magodo group

By Mohammed Kerimu

The Shangisha/Magodo Landlords Association of Nigeria has petitioned President Muhammadu Buhari over the refusal of the Lagos State Government to execute the ruling of the Supreme Court on the return of 549 plots of land to its original owners by the state.

In a document submitted to the Presidency and sighted by this reporter, the association expressed optimism that Mr Buhari would do justice to the matter he has demonstrated that a strong judiciary is a sine qua non for the operation and sustenance of democracy which he had vowed to defend.

The group further noted that since their story is similar to that of Mr President, who faced several denials in his electoral victories before God intervened in his fourth outing, he will finally lay their matter to rest since he was the Head of States about 37 years ago when they were forcefully evicted from their land.

It will be recalled that after its first judgement, the Supreme Court on March 1, 2016, again voiced out its displeasure with Lagos State Government and the state Chief Judge over their refusal to execute its earlier judgement; warning of the dangers it portends for the state to deliberately refuse to carry out its order concerning the Shangisha/Magodo land.

However, analysts are of the view that the refusal by the Lagos State Government to execute the judgement of the Supreme Court, which is the highest court in the land, is sending wrong signals to foreign investors who needed assurance of a strong judicial system before committing their resources for investment in the country.

They warned that if nothing was done to compel the state to toe the line of law and order, the country may be up for doom as no serious investor will consider a country with a weak legal system in their investment decisions.

Following the refusal of Lagos State to execute the ruling of the Supreme Court on the return of Shangisha/Magodo land which it forcefully acquired from its owners without building any public interest institution on it, the question many are asking is when did Lagos State secede from Nigeria that the ruling of the country’s apex court could no longer be binding on it?

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