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Expectations High as Sule Abdulaziz Takes Over as TCN MD/CEO

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Sule Abdulaziz

By Adedapo Adesanya

There are high expectations following the confirmation of Mr Sule Abdulaziz as the substantive Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) by President Muhammadu Buhari.

His full takeover of the role was announced by Mrs Ndidi Mbah, the General Manager, Public Affairs, TCN in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday.

The statement said that until his confirmation, Mr Abdulaziz was the Acting Managing Director of the company since May 19, 2020.

Mrs Mbah said that before becoming the acting managing director, Mr Abdulaziz was the General Manager (Projects) at the company’s headquarters.

“Subsequently, he became the Regional Transmission Manager of Shiroro and Abuja Regions of TCN with responsibility for various operational and managerial functions including the wheeling of bulk power to the Distribution Companies (Discos).

“He was also in charge of coordination and supervision of equipment maintenance and repairs, transmission network reliability, security and expansion, inventory and stock management among.”

Mrs Mbah said that Mr Abdulaziz had been responsible for the overall supervision of the affairs of the company including transmission projects, transmission network operations and maintenance, and system operations.

Other responsibilities he carried out, according to her, were market administration, human resources management and chief accounting officer.

“Under his watch as the acting managing director, TCN made milestone achievements in projects execution and delivery, stable grid management, and human resources management that optimised personnel performance and productivity.

“Working with an executive management consisting of four Executive Directors,  Abdulaziz embarked on initiatives and execution that significantly transformed TCN from a faltering successor company in the post-privatisation era to a viable national and sub-regional transmission company,” she said.

Mrs Mbah said that Mr Abdulaziz also distinguished himself as a skilled human resources manager who brought industrial harmony to TCN and had continued to maintain a non-interference and non-divisive policy in dealing with labour unions and union matters.

She said that the TCN boss equally enhanced capacity development by strategically investing in the training and retraining of staff to bridge skills gaps among others.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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Reps Seek to Penalise Employers for Late Payment of Salaries, Pensions

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late payment of salaries

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

A bill to prohibit late payment of salaries, pensions and other emoluments of workers has passed the second reading in the House of Representatives.

The bill is titled A Bill for an Act to prohibit late payment of Workers’ Wages, Pension and Other Emolument in Nigeria and Prescribes penalties for Violation; and Related Matters. It was sponsored by the Speaker of the House, Mr Femi Gbajabiamila, and scaled the second reading during plenary on Tuesday in Abuja.

Upon securing the second reading, the piece of legislation was referred straight to the Committee of the Whole for consideration, as no member opposed it.

Mr Gbajabiamila said there are varying penalties for offenders, including a term of imprisonment of up to one month.

For instance, an employer, who delays payment of salaries for a duration of one to seven days, will be liable to pay 10 per cent of one month’s pay to the employee; for eight to 30 days (20 per cent of the month’s pay); 30 to 60 days (30 per cent of one month’s pay); and 60 days/above (30 per cent of one month’s pay) plus improvement for one month.

The lawmaker disclosed that the bill wants to ensure the timely remuneration of employees, whether in the public or private sector. It also aims to prohibit the withholding of payment due to employees by employers in the guise of using the same to cover the cost of employee negligence.

In addition, it wants transparency of contracts between employers and employees and prescribes penalties against employers for violations of the provisions of this bill.

Furthermore, the bill, when passed into law, will provide compensation for employees and improve the general welfare conditions of employment for labour in Nigeria.

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The Prospects for Tech Career in the Future

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Tech Startups

By Otori Emmanuel

Technology’s capacity to foster growth and development is more apparent than ever. In that, the influence of technology cannot be overstated, from streamlining routine tasks to creating ground-breaking solutions. Technology has been extensively adopted throughout generations, and there is still an expectancy for it to meet future needs.

A growing demand for qualified technologists exists due to how prevalent technology has become. According to a report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, from 2021 to 2031, it is anticipated that overall employment in computer and information technology occupations would increase by 15%, substantially faster than the average for all occupations. This increase is anticipated to result in the creation of around 682,800 new jobs during the decade.

Many are putting in a lot of effort to maintain their position in the future and avoid becoming obsolete. This involves continuing personal training through online learning resources, giving back to the community, participating in tech forums, and attending conferences that expose one to the various facets of the tech industry.

Gap in the Industry

However, there is now competition across industries for these abilities as a result of the demand for tech skills. To keep the sector prospering, the technology skill gap caused by this competition needs to be closed. With the development of new technologies, workers’ contributions have been affected by the move toward machine learning, robotic engineering, artificial intelligence, cloud services, and decentralized operations.

The difference between what people can do and what employers expect them to be able to do is known as the skills gap. If an employee just knows how to program, yet a technology job role requires knowledge of both internet networking and a programming language, there is a skills gap. Due to this gap, businesses find it challenging to fill open positions. The employee can get better at this by developing the talent they lack.

Therefore, in order to supply services effectively, these new concepts must be acquired and mastered. Many tech professionals have been compelled to learn new ideas, hone their already-existing talents, and take on more difficult tasks to advance their careers because not all of them are knowledgeable in these new tech disciplines.

Tech industry benefits to Individuals

Due to the numerous benefits offered to employees, such as competitive pay, flexible work schedules, health insurance, skill development, paid parental leave, and job security, the tech industry is still enticing. Hence, many people have transitioned into IT from non-technical backgrounds.

Nowadays, many people do online training and obtain certifications to equip them with the knowledge they need to thrive in their employment. This is being done now to protect the future, even though it was rarely done in the past. Others have pursued their interests while working for tech companies without necessarily being “in IT”. The ease of entrance into the tech industry offers insight into how the industry is changing. Many IT experts are willing to work remotely from their homes.

Skills for the Future

Currently, hard skills and Soft skills are two basic skills essential to delivering maximum performance in the tech industry. Hard skills are frequently knowledge-based talents that are exclusive to particular professions, whereas soft skills are frequent and value-based skills that are not connected to particular employment.

Hard skills include, among others:

  • Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  • Machine Learning (ML)
  • Data science
  • Data analytics
  • Data visualisation
  • User Interface/Experience (UI/UX)
  • Software engineering
  • Cloud computing
  • Internet of things (IoT)
  • Cybersecurity
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Technical research and writing

Several Soft skills include;

  • Communication skills
  • Leadership skills
  • Team player skills
  • Mentorship skills
  • Work Ethic
  • Empathy
  • Networking skills etc.

Future skills are those abilities that empower people to solve tough problems when situations evolve yet in an organised manner. It comprises hard skills, soft skills, transferable skills and other innovative skills. These abilities are essential for the coordination of formal activities. Some are innate that need to be cultured, while others can be formed through a learning process. They include; Creativity, Decision making and good judgment, Digital literacy and Computational thinking, Cognitive thinking, Collaboration, Management, Cultural intelligence, Financial Intelligence, Emotional intelligence, Automation etc.

In addition to one’s primary training, these abilities are necessary for working in multi-functional teams. Not every skill must be mastered to succeed.

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Buhari Appoints Dembos as NTA Director-General

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Salihu Abdulhamid Dembos

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

Mr Salihu Abdulhamid Dembos has been appointed as the Director-General/Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA).

Mr Dembos was appointed to the position by President Muhammadu Buhari, a statement issued on Wednesday by Mr Segun Adeyemi, the media aide to the Minister of Information and Culture, Mr Lai Mohammed, disclosed.

Mr Adeyemi quoted his boss as saying that the appointment of the new DG is for a tenure of three years in the first instance.

Until his appointment, Mr Dembos was the Executive Director in charge of Marketing at the NTA.

His career as a media professional spans over 20 years. He has served as General Manager of two NTA stations, in Lokoja and Kano; and as the Zonal Director of NTA, Kaduna, among other appointments.

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