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Kwara Governor Picks Channels TV Reporter as Aide

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Kwara Governor Political Communications

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

One of the journalists with Channels Television, Mr Bashir Adigun, has been appointed as an aide to the Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq.

A statement issued on Friday by the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr Rafiu Ajakaye, disclosed that Mr Adigun was chosen by Mr AbdulRazaq as his Special Adviser on Political Communications.

According to the CPS, the senior media practitioner was among the seven Special Advisers selected by the Governor to assist take decisions that would move the state forward.

Mr Adigun, who is married with children, is a native of Ifelodun local government and he is armed with decades of experience across the print and broadcast media industry.

Before his latest appointment, he was the Controller News and Current Affairs (Northern Nigeria) for the Channels TV and the Abuja Correspondent for a leading global newswire, Associated Press (AP). He also worked as a Reporter/Researcher at the Guardian newspaper.

He is a 1990 graduate of Communications and Language Arts at the Nigeria’s premier University of Ibadan, Oyo State.

He has two Master’s degrees, both from the Ahmadu Bello University Zaria —  Masters in International Affairs and Diplomacy (MIAD) and Law Enforcement, Criminal Justice (MLC).

In the statement, Mr Ajakaye said the Governor appointed Mr Saliu Tunde Bello as his Special Adviser on Security, Professor Adekunle Dunmade as Special Adviser on Health, Mr Ahmed Yinka Aluko as Special Adviser on Special Duties), while Mr Attahiru Ibrahim as chosen as Special Adviser on Sports and Youths.

In addition, the former Special Adviser on Political (SAPOL) Mr Saadu Salau, was named as the Special Adviser on Strategy, while the former Special Adviser Strategy, Mr Abdullateef Alakawa is now the new SAPOL.

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Ecobank Hires Tomisin Fashina to Replaces Ogbogu

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Tomisin Fashina

By Adedapo Adesanya

Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI), the parent company of Ecobank Group, has announced the appointment of Mr Tomisin Fashina as its new Group Executive for Operations and Technology.

The appointee will occupy the position in addition to his existing role of the Managing Director of eProcess International, a statement from the lender confirmed.

With the appointment, Mr Fashina will succeed Mr Eddy Ogbogu, following the latter’s recent retirement after serving the group for 11 years.

Speaking on the appointment, Mr Ade Ayeyemi, the Group CEO Ecobank, stated that: “The rapidly accelerating digital adoption by Africa’s citizenry and businesses, together with the explosion in e-commerce across the continent is driving transformation throughout the banking and payment sectors.

“Winning across operations and technology is essential for the Ecobank Group’s short, medium and long-term success, and is an integral requirement of our ongoing determination to continue to meet the evolving expectations of our customers.

“Tomisin is well experienced to ensure this, and his new role provides him with an overarching view of our operations and technology functions.”

Mr Fashina has over 30 years of experience, predominantly in technology management and financial services.

Before joining the Ecobank Group, Mr Fashina was the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Steward Bank Harare Zimbabwe.

He has also been Chief Executive Officer for Yookos, a social media company, and has held several positions at Barclays Bank, including General Manager & Head, Transactional Banking Products, and Channels Management and Director, Cash Management & Payments.

Prior to this, at Citigroup South Africa, he held leadership roles in its Global Transaction Services as Division Head & Director, Client Delivery, sub-Saharan Africa; and Division Head, Electronic Banking & Implementation, sub-Saharan Africa.

He has a BSc degree in Computer Engineering from Obafemi Awolowo University, a Master of Business Administration in Marketing from the University of Lagos and a PhD in Business Management in Leadership from Capella University, Minnesota, USA.

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BREAKING: Buhari Picks Usman Alkali Baba as Acting IGP

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Usman Alkali Baba

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

A Deputy Inspector-General of Police (DIG), Mr Usman Alkali Baba, has been appointed as the acting Inspector-General of Police (IGP).

One of the social media aides to President Muhammadu Buhari, Mr Bashir Ahmad, confirmed this development in a post on his verified Twitter page on Tuesday.

Mr Ahmad disclosed that the appointment of Mr Baba was with immediate effect and this puts an end to the reign of Mr Abubakar Adamu, whose tenure was extended by the President for three months a few months ago.

The post by Mr Ahmad disclosed that the appointment of Mr Baba was announced in Abuja by the Minister of Police Affairs, Mr Maigari Dingyadi, on the authority of Mr Buhari, who travelled to London for medical attention last week.

“President @MBuhari has appointed DIG Usman Alkali Baba as the new acting inspector-general of police, with immediate effect, Minister of Police Affairs Maigari Dingyadi discloses the President’s directive this afternoon, in Abuja,” the post, seen by Business Post, read.

About Alkali Baba Usman

Alkali Baba Usman was born in 1963 and joined the Nigeria Police in March 1988. He attended all courses mandatory at various ranks and also took extra courses like investigation, insurgency and counter-terrorism and traffic management.

The alumnus of Bayero University, Kano and the University of Maiduguri is a member of the International Association of Police and a Fellow of the International War College.

He was in Kaduna as the Deputy Commissioner, Administration and in Abuja as the Deputy Commissioner, Investigation. He was also in Ilorin as an Area Commander at a point and second-in-command in Ebonyi.

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SEC Okays CEOs of Nigerian Exchange Group, Others

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Nigerian Exchange Group

By Dipo Olowookere

The appointments of the chief executive officers (CEOs) of the demutualised Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) have been approved by the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC).

Recently, the SEC, which is the highest regulatory body for the capital market in Nigeria, authorised the unbundling of the exchange after meeting all the requirements, including registering with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC).

This transformed the NSE into a non-operating holding company known as the Nigerian Exchange Group (NGX Group) and three operating subsidiaries Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX), the operating exchange; NGX Regulation Limited (NGX REGCO), the independent regulatory company; and NGX Real Estate Limited (NGX RELCO), the real estate company.

Mr Oscar Onyema, who had been the CEO of the NSE, was appointed as the Group CEO of the NGX Group, while Mr Temi Popoola was made the CEO of NGX and Ms Tinuade Awe chosen as the CEO of NGX RELCO.

In his remarks, the Chairman of the NGX Group, Mr Abimbola Ogunbanjo, stated that, “The confirmation of these appointments are an important step in the process of building a leading and resilient African exchange group following the completion of our demutualisation programme.

“I am delighted to continue working with Oscar Onyema, who has played a significant role in the reshaping of the exchange.

“As a proven business leader and strategic thinker, I am confident that he will elevate the NGX Group and its subsidiaries successfully into a new era of development.”

On his part, the Chairman of the NGX, Mr A.B Mahmoud, said: “The confirmation of the appointment of Temi Popoola as the first CEO of the Nigerian Exchange Limited comes at a pivotal moment for Nigerian capital markets as the Exchange enters a new phase of its history as a demutualised company, bringing to the exchange his track record of achievement local and global capital markets.

“He will focus on ensuring the exchange delivers an even higher level of service for all its participants and stakeholders, including investors, listed companies and brokers.

“I look forward to working with him and his team in the new dispensation as we move forward on implementing the group’s growth strategy.”

On the part of the Chairperson of NGX REGCO, Ms Catherine Echeozo, “The clear separation of the regulatory and business functions is an essential part of the group’s operations following demutualisation and the board was determined to ensure the selection of an experienced regulator for this task.

“I believe all the exchange’s stakeholders will welcome the announcement of Tinuade Awe as the first CEO NGX Regulation, given her prodigious experience and track record in capital markets regulation.

“Our stakeholders can continue to look forward to a robust and transparent regulatory regime under her leadership.”

Who they are

Oscar Onyema

Mr Oscar Onyema until his new appointment served as the CEO and member of the National Council of the exchange from 2011 – 2021.

In this role, he was responsible for supervising the general work of the exchange. He serves as the Chairman, Central Securities Clearing System Plc (CSCS), the clearing, settlement and depository for the Nigerian capital markets; and Chairman, NG Clearing, which is in the process of developing a Central Counterparty Clearing House (CCP).

In addition, Mr Onyema is a board member of the National Pension Commission of Nigeria (PENCOM) and sits on several advisory boards including the London Stock Exchange Group (LSEG) Africa Advisory Group (LAAG).

Prior to relocating to Nigeria, he served as Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer at American Stock Exchange (Amex). He also ran the NYSE Amex equity business following the merger of NYSE Euronext and Amex in 2008.

His remarkable achievements have earned him awards such as the Special Recognition Award for transformational leadership in the Nigerian Capital Markets at Business Day Top 25 CEOs Award 2018.

In 2015 Forbes Magazine named him among the Top 10 Most Powerful Men in Africa. In the preceding year, he received the national honour of Officer of the Order of the Niger (OON) from the Federal Government of Nigeria.

Mr Onyema is an alumnus of Harvard Business School, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and INSEAD International Directors Programme. He got his MBA from Baruch College, New York; and BSc degree from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors (IoD) Nigeria, Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS), Associate of the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment (CISI) in the UK, and holds FINRA Series 7, 24, 63 qualifications in the United States.

Temi Popoola

Mr Temi Popoola is a successful C-suite leader whose unique blend of business acumen, financial expertise, global market growth and operational insight has earned him a reputation built on verifiable career achievements.

A Wall Street trained investment banker, Mr Popoola joins NGX Ltd from Renaissance Capital (Rencap) where he was Managing Director and CEO for West Africa.

He supported the continuous growth, profitability and success of the organisation by providing strategic market insight and leadership. He led the transformation of Rencap in West Africa by diversifying the company’s revenue streams into fixed income, derivatives, structured products, debt financing and wealth management.

In addition to influencing change across the organisation, he was responsible for overseeing a global workforce, expanding foreign investor capital opportunities into West Africa and introducing enduring business processes and strategic initiatives.

Since his return to Nigeria in 2009, Mr Popoola has also worked with United Bank of Africa (UBA) as Head of Structured Products for Global markets and with CSL Stockbrokers Ltd as Head of Sales and Trading. In both of these positions, he guided growth and advancement for investors across global markets, including South Africa, the UK, the Middle East and the US.

Mr Popoola began his career in London as a portfolio manager focused on African energy markets and worked for several years as a senior equity derivatives trader with Bank of America Securities in New York where he drove firm profitability by providing derivative solutions to US corporations and family offices.

He graduated with a First-Class degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Lagos and holds a Master’s degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He is a Chartered financial analyst (CFA) and a Chartered stockbroker (CIS). He holds Series 7 and 63 licensures.

Tinuade Awe

Ms Tinuade Awe, prior to attaining her new position, was an Executive Director, Regulation at the exchange. She also served as the General Counsel and Head of the Legal and Regulation Division as well as Council Secretary before becoming an Executive Director.

Before joining the exchange, Ms Awe worked with the United Nations in The Hague and Geneva as well as the New York offices of the global law firm, Simpson Thacher & Barlett and Banwo & Ighodalo in Lagos, Nigeria.

As Executive Director, Regulation, she had responsibility for the regulation of the two primary stakeholder groups of the exchange, i.e., the dealing members that trade on the exchange and issuers that have securities listed on the bourse.

Her team was responsible for rulemaking and interpretation, monitoring, inspections, market surveillance, investigations, regulatory technology, and enforcement.

She is a non-executive director of the Central Securities Clearing System Plc (CSCS) and also a member of the board of the Financial Reporting Council of Nigeria (FRC).

She chairs the FRC’s Board Corporate Governance Committee, which has board-level responsibility to monitor the implementation of the National Code of Corporate Governance (NCCG).

Among other professional pursuits, Ms Awe was a member of the Nigerian Senate’s Technical Advisory Committee to review the Bill for an Act to Amend the Companies and Allied Matters Act and the Bill for an Act to review the Investment and Securities Act.

Ms Awe has an LL.B Degree from the Obafemi Awolowo University, graduating as the Best Female Student in the Faculty of Law. She finished at the Nigerian Law School with First Class Honours, graduating as Best Overall Student. She also holds LL.M Degrees from Harvard Law School, where she was a Landon H. Gammon Fellow, as well as The London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), where she graduated with a Merit. At the LSE, she was a British Council Scholar. She is admitted to both the Nigerian and New York Bars.

Ms Awe is a member of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) and the International Bar Association. She is an Associate Member of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators of Nigeria (ICSAN) and the Institute of Capital Market Registrars (ICMR). She is a Life Member of the Institute of Directors. She is the recipient of The African Legal Awards 2018, General Counsel of the Year; Law Digest Africa Awards, General Counsel of the Year 2018, and Esq. Nigeria Legal Awards, General Counsel of the Year 2017.

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DPR Sacks Directors over Marginal Fields Controversy

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department of petroleum resources DPR

By Adedapo Adesanya

The controversies that followed the just-concluded bid round of 57 marginal fields has reportedly caused the sacking of all the deputy directors of the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR).

According to Nigerian NewsDirect, the sack of the directors was initiated over the disputes that railed the selection of winners and matching of companies exclusively done by the Director of the agency, Mr Sarki Auwalu.

According to the report, the round had gone contrary to the global oil industry practice of public opening of bids.

There were claims that the current management chose to send electronic mails to selected winners with a directive to pay a proportion of the signature bonus into the Treasury Single Account (TSA) of the federal government.

The winners expressed fears over litigation that will come up with the matching of winners.

Last week, the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Timpre Sylva, announced that 50 per cent of the marginal field winners had paid for the signature bonus.

According to cited sources, the sudden sack was considered as a choice to ensure a firm grip of the DPR since most of the affected persons are senior to the head of the organisation.

It was added that some of them had participated in previous bid rounds conducted by the department and have more experience.

Efforts made to get a reaction from the Head Public Affairs Unit, Mr Paul Osu, proved abortive as there was no response to the text message and phone calls made to his phone line.

The affected deputy directors include Head, Corporate Services, Mr Isah Tafidah; Head, Engineering and Standard, Mr Akann Musa; Head, Downstream Monitoring and Regulation, Mr Mohammed Alaku; and Head, Upstream Monitoring and regulation, Mr Enorense Amadasu.

Others are Head, Safety, Health and Environment, Mr Olusanya Bajomo; Head, Planning, Mr Johnson Ajewole; and Head, Gas Monitoring and Regulation, Mr Musa Zagi.

According to the report, those promoted as replacement include a Mallam Ciroma who is replacing Mr Isa Tafida as Head, Corporate Services; Akann Musa who is also named as Head, Engineering and Standard, the position he has held before now; Mr Sadiq Bashir is replacing Mr Mohammed Alaku as Head, Downstream Monitoring and Regulation; and Mr Garba Salihu new Head, Upstream Monitoring and regulation, and a replacement for Mr Enorense Amadasu.

Others are Mr Balogun A.A, a replacement for Mr Olisanya Bajomo as Head, Safety, Health and Environment; Mr Babajide Fasina, new Head, Planning, and a replacement for Mr.l Johnson Ajewole; and Mr I.Y Abubakar, new Head, Gas Monitoring and Regulation, and a replacement for Mr Musa Zagi.

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Nigerian Air Force Warns Against Recruitment Fraudster

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Nigerian Air Force

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Nigerian Air Force (NAF) has warned the unsuspecting public against the activity of a fraudulent recruitment scheme by a certain Olabisi Amoo, who claims to have the exclusive right to assist any applicant seeking employment with NAF schools.

According to the Air Force in a press release by Air Commodore Edward Gabkwet, Director of Public Relations and Information, Mr Amoo had circulated the message on his social media platforms.

The NAF described the information as a “callous and unpatriotic message.”

He said the message being spread by Mr Amoo was clearly aimed at misleading and defrauding innocent Nigerians in need of employment opportunities.

The release reads in part, “The NAF wishes to inform the general public that it has not advertised nor intends to commence employment of teachers for its numerous schools spread across the length and breadth of the nation. Even when such need arises, it will not be channelled through individuals but rather publicized and made known to all Nigerians using the various available media outlets.”

The Air Force has always warned the public about the activities of fraudulent recruiters, warning that the official channel is through its website.

The NAF had always hammered that the entire NAF recruitment process is completely FREE OF CHARGE and is being conducted in a fair and transparent manner.

In the instance of possible information, complaints can be lodged by calling any of the following numbers: 09064432351, 09055840142, 08053440802 (available Monday – Friday between 8:30 AM and 5:30 PM) or by sending an email to careers@airforce.mil.ng.

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Google Payments Expert Caesar Sengupta Announces Exit

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Caesar Sengupta

By Ahmed Rahma

One of the brains behind the payments initiative at Google, Mr Caesar Sengupta, has announced that he will be leaving the organisation in about a month’s time.

In a post on Monday, the head of the tech giant’s payments initiative said his last day at Google would be April 30, 2021.

The senior Google executive, who has worked with the company for 15 years, however, did not reveal his next destination or step after leaving the organisation next month.

“My last day at Google will be April 30th. I haven’t decided what I will start next,” he said in his post on LinkedIn.

The vice president and general manager of payments also expressed optimism about the future of the tech giant.

“I remain very positive about Google’s future but it’s time for me to see if I can ride without training wheels,” he said.

Mr Sengupta, who is based in Singapore, was also one of the key people behind the launch and success of Google Pay in India and helped the payment app’s re-launch in the United States and Singapore.

The payment facility is now used by over 150 million users in 30 countries.

Google reacts

Meanwhile, in an emailed statement to Reuters, a Google spokesperson said, “Through his time at Google, Caesar has played a key role in starting, building and leading initiatives such as ChromeOS, Next Billion Users and Google Pay.

“We are excited to see what he builds next and wish him the best in his new journey.”

Sengupta exploits at Google

As Vice President and General Manager of Payments & the Next Billion Users initiative at Google, he lead Google’s efforts in building innovative, helpful products for new internet users around the world.

Mr Sengupta who is passionate about applying technology to solve today’s most challenging problems team launched Google Pay in 2015 to help make payments faster, easier and more secure.

Today, Google Pay has over 150 million monthly active users across 30 countries.

He also led the Next Billion Users Initiative at Google where his team is responsible for the creation of products and tools that drive more inclusive access to the internet like Files, Camera Go, Kormo Jobs, etc.

They also work with teams across Google to make their core products like Search, YouTube and Android work better for the Next Billion Users.

Throughout his career at Google, he has led multiple acquisitions and strategic investments for Google. Among the recent strategic investments were Indonesia-based GoJek and Indian-based startups Glance, Dunzo and Reliance.

He also helped start and lead the ChromeOS team that built ChromeOS (#2 OS globally) which powers Chromebooks.

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The blockchain brings new financing options to the business market. For example, Bitcoin Cash casino has adapted to only using cryptocurrency. This way, it makes it easier for their customers to deposit and withdraw in a BCH casino. Entrepreneurs have taken note of this and are looking to invest more in crypto than in fiat markets.

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