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Women Are Huge Economic Assets—Ben-Willie

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huge economic assets Kilali Tribe

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

An Executive Director at Heritage Bank, Ms Osepiribo Ben-Willie, has described women as huge economic assets, noting that their role in the development of a nation can never be pushed aside.

The banker said this at the Women Must Conference 2.0, organised by the Kilali Tribe of Rivers and Bayelsa States.

At the event held in Port Harcourt titled The Woman and Her Must, Ms Ben-Willie affirmed the need to deliberately adopt measures to deepen women’s empowerment to drive the nation’s socio-economic growth.

She noted that women are actively involved in the act of creation of a new sustainable economy; hence gender inclusiveness and women’s empowerment must be taken as a priority.

According to her, after evaluating the bottlenecks restraining the Kilali Tribe and other women from attaining the platforms to grow professionally and thrive in all spheres of the economy, it is a call to action to “tackle the challenges of gender disparity and lack of inclusiveness that have continued to impede the expected rapid economic empowerment that could help unshackle our women’s entrepreneurial prowess and foster more representation for women and girls at decision-making forums and Board levels in comparison to their peers in the developed countries.”

Ms Ben-Willie added that for women to emerge economically and socially as independent, there was an urgent need to tackle psychological, social and skill constraints.

Collaborating this view, the co-founder and former Group Executive Director of Sahara Group, Mr Tonye Cole, advocated for women and girl inclusiveness across all sectors of society, including economic participation and decision-making.

According to him, the country should be conscious of gender equality whilst emphasising that dealing with psychological constraints will enable women to be balanced emotionally.

He stressed the need for organisations to leverage women’s positions on the board level, as they are resourceful and could enormously impact the growth of any society.

Mr Cole also charged women to be deliberate in positioning and championing courses that would put them at the forefront of making a difference.

At the event, the organisers commended Heritage Bank for being an agent for the actualisation of Sustainable Development Goals SDG 5 – Gender Equality, as well as women’s empowerment for socio-economic growth.

“We are proud of Heritage Bank for making us soar while promoting women’s empowerment. Over the years, Heritage Bank has proved to be an agent for the actualisation of achieving SDG 5 – Gender Equality, as well women empowerment,” the President of Eveafrique News, Ivy Davies-Etokakpan, who is also a member of Kilali Tribe, said.

The Kilali Tribe is an association of prolific Rivers and Bayelsa State women who come together to support themselves through peer learning, capacity-building initiatives, networking, and mentoring. Also, provide similar structured support to other women within the community.

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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Violent Protest Erupts in Ibadan Over Naira Scarcity

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protest in Ibadan

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

There are reports of a violent protest in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, over the scarcity of old and new Naira notes, Business Post has gathered.

It was learned that residents of the ancient city are venting their anger over the hardship caused by the policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the federal government.

The central bank redesigned the N200, N500, and N1,000 notes and asked citizens to return their old banknotes because they would cease to be legal tender.

However, since the introduction of the new currency notes in circulation on December 15, 2022, many Nigerians have not been able to withdraw their money from banks, fuelling anger in the land.

On Friday afternoon, some residents of Ibadan, especially in Iwo Road, took to the streets to express their frustration at the development, which is coming at a time consumers have to queue for petrol.

They had bonfires on the road and disrupted business activities in some areas of the city.

Recall that today, the Governor of Oyo State, Mr Seyi Makinde, announced the suspension of his campaign activities over the scarcity of Naira and fuel.

Also on Friday, the Governors of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) met with President Muhammadu Buhari to appeal to him to change his mind on the Naira swap policy because of the effect on the people and the 2023 general elections starting later this month.

The President had earlier been asked not to show up in Kano State because of fears of a violent protest over the development. After the deadline was moved forward, the Governor of the state, Mr Abdullahi Ganduje, said he was safe to visit the ancient city.

However, during his visit to Kano, there were reports of a demonstration, with a chopped stoned by some residents of the state and convoys attacked by angry protesters.

The government claimed the protest was not directed at President Buhari, while the opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), said otherwise.

protest in Ibadan

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APC Governors Beg Buhari to Allow Use of Old, New Naira Notes

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APC Governors

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged to allow the use of old and Naira notes as legal tender in the country until the former is naturally mopped up from the circulation.

This appeal was made on Friday by Governors elected on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) during a meeting with Mr Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

In a brief chat with reporters after the meeting, the Governor of Kano State, Mr Abdullahi Ganduje, said after the request was made to the President, he promised to look into it.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) last month redesigned the N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes and said the old currency denominations would cease to be legal tender from January 31, 2023.

However, two days before the deadline, the Governor of the CBN, Mr Godwin Emefiele, after a meeting with President Buhari in his hometown in Daura, Katsina State, said the deadline had been shifted to February 10, 2023, noting that Nigerians had a grace period of February 17, 2023, to return the old notes to the bank.

On Tuesday, January 31, he appeared before the House of Representatives ad-hoc committee on the CBN policy to say Nigerians could still take their old notes to banks after the deadline, promising that citizens will not lose their funds.

Today, the APC Governors met with Mr Buhari to discuss the scarcity of Naira in the financial system and also the lingering fuel scarcity.

One of the Governors present at the gathering, Mr Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State, had claimed this week that the scarcity of cash and petrol was the handiwork of some elements in the Villa, who do not want the party to succeed in the forthcoming elections.

“We spoke with the President to allow the old and new notes to co-exist until the old notes die a natural death,” Mr Ganduje told newsmen while walking out after the meeting.

“Sir, did you discuss the petrol scarcity with him,” one of the reporters asked the Kano Governor, and he responded, “Yes.”

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Oyo Governor Suspends Campaign Activities Over Fuel, Naira Crisis

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Makinde campaign activities

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

Due to the unending fuel and new Naira notes crisis rocking the country, Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has suspended his campaign activities.

Mr Makinde is seeking another term in office under the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

He commenced his campaign activities last month, asking residents of the state to give him another chance to serve them.

But the scarcity of premium petrol spirit (PMS), otherwise known as petrol, and cash has put Nigerians under untold hardship.

Governor Makinde, during the flag-off of the Omi-Adio-Ido Road on Friday, said in solidarity with the people over anti-people economy policies of the All Progressives Congress (APC) led federal government, he would be suspending his campaign.

A statement by the Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr Wasiu Olatubosun confirmed this.

In the statement, Mr Makinde, who was in Ido to continue his campaign, directed that all campaign activities be suspended until further notice.

Mr Olatubosun said Governor Makinde noted that the suffering of his people was too much, saying he was elected to protect their interests and well-being.

The Commissioner said his boss, in an emotionally laden voice, directed leaders of the party in Oyo State to suspend the campaign.

“As a mark of honour to citizens and residents of Oyo State, the Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, has directed that all campaign activities of the party at all levels be suspended until further notice,” the statement read.

“Governor Seyi Makinde’s love for his people necessitated this unprecedented move at this time. We urge all residents and citizens of the State to remain calm as we navigate through this difficult period together,” he added.

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