Connect with us

News

Oyetola inaugurates conditional grant scheme for SMEs in Osun

Published

on

By Ismail Azeez, Osogbo

Minister of Marine and Blue Economy, Adegboyega Oyetola on Monday inaugurated a conditional grant scheme for SMEs in Osun fully funded by the Federal Government.

The former Osun State Governor also flagged off the Conditional Grant Scheme (CGS) for micro enterprises at the Industrial Development Centre (IDC) under the National Business Skills Development Initiative (NBSDI).

This is even as Oyetola extolled President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s administrative acumen and his creative approach to stimulating the economy and providing welfare for the people, as well as his strategic way of tackling hunger, poverty and misery in a depressed economy.

The Conditional Grant Scheme, according to him, is for the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises, designed to provide entrepreneurship skills, vocational skills and provision of empowerment materials (equipment) to fill the capacity gap of the youths so as to ensure that they earn income through filling the artisanal gap in Nigeria.

Speaking at the flag off ceremony held at the premises of the Industrial Development Centre (IDC) of the Federal Ministry of Industry, Osogbo, Oyetola described the gesture as a round peg in a round hole noting that the scheme is a testament to the Federal Government’s fulfillment of its determination to protect businesses in the country, especially the Nano, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (NMSMEs), which is a critical sub-sector of the Nigerian economy.

Oyetola who noted that the scheme was  in line with the renewed hope agenda of President Tinubu expressed profound gratitude to the Federal Government for graciously choosing Osun as the venue for the flag-off of the people-oriented initiative.

“We are, therefore, in Osogbo today to inaugurate the following: Remodeled textile workshop, Industrial garment equipment/machines, renovated electrical works and dual powered borehole.

“Today’s interventions are loud testaments to the Federal Government’s fulfillment of its determination to protect businesses in the country, especially the Nano, Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (NMSMEs), which is a critical sub-sector of the Nigerian economy.

“It also portrays the Federal Government, under President Tinubu’s watch as a responsible, responsive and thinking government that has empathy for the youth population of our country,” he said.

Oyetola implored the state governments to support the efforts of the Federal Government by ensuring that they establish their State Councils on MSMEs in partnership with SMEDAN in the country.

The Minister also urged the beneficiaries of the grant to maximise the opportunities offered them by the Federal Government through the scheme and use same judiciously for the purpose it was meant for.

“I urge all the beneficiaries of today’s interventions in Osun State and other beneficiaries across the country to seize the opportunity offered them by the President Tinubu’s administration to join the league of small and medium scale business owners in the country. You must know that every enduring business starts small.

“Therefore, see what you have today in your hands as a mustard seed. Start where you are and watch your efforts grow with pride,” the Minister added.

Earlier, Director-General, Small Medium Enterprise Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), Mr Charles Odii, disclosed that thousands of the residents of the state have benefited and still benefitting from different schemes of the agency overtimes

He expressed confidence that the grant would go a long way to support the businesses of the beneficiaries in particular and stimulate the economy of the state in general.

News

How I collected $3m cash for Emefiele – CBN employee

Published

on

A Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) employee, Mr Monday Osazuwa, on Friday told an Ikeja Special Offences Court how the former apex bank governor, Godwin Emefiele, on different occasions, directed him to collect three million dollars cash in tranches.

Osasuwa, while being led in evidence by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) counsel, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN), said he was a dispatch rider in Zenith Bank in 2001 before he joined the CBN in 2014.
Osasuwa said he joined the apex bank as a senior supervisor in 2014.

He said Emefiele was the Managing Director of Zenith Bank Plc while he was working as a dispatch rider in the bank.
The witness said he knew Emefiele, who was his boss, while in Zenith Bank and that he later joined him at the CBN.
The witness said he was later appointed  as a senior supervisor (full time) in recording and filing of documents while working in the CBN governor’s office in Lagos.

“I was still working in the CBN governor’s office while I was appointed as a full staff member and we usually communicated through Whatsapp and email.

“I function as a senior supervisor, recording  and filing with other official roles.

“I recall that in 2020, when he was outside Lagos, he called me that he would give me a number that a man had something I should collect from him and that the man would give me the number of another person.

“When I got to the man’s office, I was given an envelope. I  counted the money and the man said I should give it to my boss,” he said.

The witness further told the court that the first defendant used to collect money by himself  anytime he was in Lagos but anytime the defendant was not around, he would tell him to give the money to the second defendant.
Osazuwa added that Emefiele sent him to MINL Ltd. when he was with Zenith Bank.

“This company is situated at Isolo, the first defendant did send me to collect cheques from the company from Mr Monday and when I collected the cheque from Mr Monday, I would give it back to Emefiele and he would lodge the money into Dumies Oil and Gas.

According to him, Emefiele’s co-defendant, Henry Isioma-Omoile, lived in the residence of the former CBN governor.

He stated that when he collected money for his boss, he would take it to his residence at Iru Close, Ikoyi.
“Whenever I received the money and take it to my boss’s residence, Mr Emefiele would tell me to give it to the second defendant whenever he was not at home.

“I did not keep a record of transactions because the instruction he gave me was that I should collect the money and bring the money to his house.

“The highest amount I collected was one million dollars all in cash and some weeks later, the businessman also called me to collect $850,000, $750,000 and $400,000 cash in tranches.

“I have never been rewarded, paid or given anything because I am doing it out of faithfulness and he knows it but he has never for once said, ‘take this’,” he said.

Under cross-examination by the defence counsel, Mr Abdulakeem Labi-Lawal, the witness confirmed  to the court that he had been working with the defendant since 2002.

According to the witness, Emefiele passed instructions to him through the second defendant and that he had been collecting cheques for Dumies Oil and Gas.

He, however, told the court when he was made to confront the second defendant during investigation but the second  defendant failed to admit it.

“I started collecting cheques for Dumies Oil and Gas when I was in Zenith Bank.

“I cannot calculate the exact year I have been collecting the cheques but it all started when the first defendant was the Managing Director at Zenith Bank and I was working at Zenith Bank,” he said.

EFCC on April 8 arraigned Emefiele on 23 counts bordering on abuse of office, accepting gratifications, corrupt demand, receiving property fraudulently obtained and conferring corrupt advantage.

Emefiele’s co-defendant was arraigned on three counts bordering on acceptance of gift by agents.
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Earlier, Oshodi had declined the oral application for adjournment moved twice by the defence counsel.
The judge adjourned the case until April 29 for trial and hearing of application for closed-session.

Continue Reading

News

Anambra boat mishap: Police recover 3 more bodies

Published

on

The Police Command in Anambra, said it had recovered three more bodies from the  boat mishap that occurred on Wednesday, in Anam community, Anambra West Local Government Area of the state.

The command’s spokesperson, SP Tochukwu Ikenga, said this in a statement in Awka on Friday.

Ikenga said that the command’s Marine Police unit in Anambra recovered the remaining three bodies of the boat accident during the shooting of a movie.

He said that two of the bodies were recovered on April 11, while the last body was washed ashore by the tide early Friday.

Ikenga said that the bodies have been deposited in an undisclosed mortuary in Asaba, Delta.

He said that the President of Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) has been notified of the recovery.

“Mr Aderemi Adeoye, Commissioner, Anambra Police Command, has urged all water commuters to be safety conscious,” he said.

He advised water commuters to avoid behaviour that might jeopardise their safety and that of others on water transit.

Adeoye assured that the command would thoroughly investigate the cause of the sad accident that claimed the lives of five actors and proffer a lasting solution.

He commended the Marine Command Unit and its Commander for their dedication to duty.

Continue Reading

News

FIRS generates N12.3 trn in 2023 – CEO

Published

on

The Chief Executive, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr Zacch Adedeji, said that the organisation witnessed unprecedented progress in revenue collection, culminating in a remarkable achievement of N12.3 trillion in 2023.
The chief executive, who was represented by a staff of the organisation, Mrs Aisha Ribadu, said this on Friday at the FIRS special day at the ongoing 35th Enugu International Trade Fair.
Adedeji said that this success was a testament to its dedication to nurturing and empowering its workforce, and to ensuring they possessed the skills, knowledge and tools necessary to excel.
He expressed his heartfelt appreciation to the Enugu State Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA) for its discerning choice of theme, “Promoting Made-in-Nigeria Products for Global Competitiveness”.
The FIRS boss added that the choice of theme reflected the collective aspiration to not only dominate the African market but to assert relevance on the global stage.
“Investing in human capital is the cornerstone of sustainable development, and nations that prioritise human  development inevitably experience  enduring growth and prosperity.
“The FIRS has spearheaded transformative reforms aimed at diversifying revenue sources and enhancing the overall taxpayer experience.
 “One of such initiatives is the introduction of the Taxpromax Solutions, an innovative e-service platform designed to empower taxpayers to fulfill their obligations seamlessly from anywhere at any time,” Adedeji said.
He expressed gratitude to ECCIMA for affording the FIRS the invaluable opportunity to showcase its commitment to national development.
In a welcome address, the ECCIMA President, Mr Odeiga Jideonwo, said that the essence of the special day was to bring the business community and the general public closer to the activities and operations of the FIRS.
 Jideonwo, who was represented by the first Deputy President, Nnanyereugo Onyemelukwe, said that the FIRS should  work in tandem with other agencies of government and stakeholders in the organised private  sector.
He said that it would enable the FIRS to redefine and streamline tax administration and regime in the country.
” It will also bring about a society  wherein the rich and poor will leverage each other in contributing to the development of the society in a fair and just manner, as it affects company tax by various businesses,” he said.
 He commended the chief executive for its various innovations aimed at voluntary bringing into the FIRS database, companies in order to boost the tax network.
Jideonwo added that it would also boost revenue with the attendant grace offered in the process to those who had been evading tax payment.
Continue Reading

Trending