Monday, 3 June 2013

Empowered & Entrepreneurial: Nigerian Women Receive Boost From New Business Network



Launched on 1st March 2013, Women Of West Africa In Entrepreneurship (WOWe) was created to meet the needs of Nigeria’s ‘missing middle’, young educated African women who are driven to start in business but face significant challenges in competing with their male counterparts.
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The Global Banking Alliance for Women says women entrepreneurs drive 20% more revenue in spite of 50% less being invested in them. This picture becomes even more extreme when viewed at a national level; according to the IFC, in Nigeria women owned businesses represent over 25% of registered businesses but have access to less than 3% of commercial bank finance.

Launched just a few weeks ago; Women Of West Africa In Entrepreneurship (WOWe) has garnered wide support from the female business community in Nigeria, connecting a landmark 10,000 members in just under 4 weeks. Entrepreneur and WOWe member Victoria Benedicta Okpanachi says “I have waited a long time for this kind of organisation. I have two products, both are doing well but there are lots of challenges in getting things done. Labour is scarce for me to get as a starter; I can't pay more than I gain. The banks are not helping matters at all. If more women get empowered in Nigeria things will get better.”

The organisation’s first conference will take place on the 20th and 21st of June at the Eko Hotel on Adetokunbo Ademola Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, and workshops will take place on the 22nd at the Wheatbaker Hotel on No 4 Opitolo Rd, Ikoyi, Lagos. The objective of the WOWe conference is to raise the profile of excellence in entrepreneurship to Nigerian women between 18 – 40, as well as profile and promote young upcoming female entrepreneurs. A key aim is to make entrepreneurship accessible to women through social media, interactive panels, Q&A sessions and participation from young upcoming female entrepreneurs.

PhD Student, Entrepreneur and WOWe member Tosin Alabi agrees with this approach, “I get inspiration, especially from the stories of other women who have succeeded in their own businesses. These success stories reassure you that with hard work you can also succeed. It is not just a community for me anymore, it’s a family of successful female entrepreneurs who encourage and support each other.”

She goes on to observe, “Nigeria has a population of about 50% women and only in the last couple of years did their role in development gain serious attention. As women, there is still a lot of work to be done as regards our contribution to the development of Nigeria. Women are still yet to totally overcome the clutches of the cultural set back placed on them, as they are often viewed only as mothers and wives. I believe we can only contribute our quota by working hard ourselves and encouraging as many hard working women around us as we can.”

The cultural obstacles faced by women are universally acknowledged. It is widely accepted that creating entrepreneurial opportunities and building capacity in financial literacy, business and financial management and ICT for women and girls is critical for economic development and prosperity in Nigeria. However, while there are many high profile initiatives, funds, grants and training programs available to empower and support women in this regard, there isn’t an impartial national platform that allows all the key stakeholders in this sector to meet.

Additionally, many women entrepreneurs are not aware or have the skills or network to take advantage of these initiatives designed for their development. In fact some of the funds and special budgets allocated to support women entrepreneurs remain unspent in Nigeria. Student and WOWe member Anurika Kenneth says “We need to enlighten society on the dangers of excluding our women and girls from education. Society also needs to know the potential dangers of such acts to national development.”

Recently, CBN launched N200bn fund for SMEs, 60% of which should go towards women-owned enterprises providing them with single digit interest rate repayment terms. According to a study released by the World Bank, if girls in Nigeria were employed at the same rate as boys, they would add $13.9 billion to the country’s annual GDP. Unlike men, women tend to invest 90 percent of their income back into their families and communities (Cherie Blair Foundation for Women on April 29, 2013).

Speaking at the recent World Economic Forum in Davos, Christine Lagarde said, “When women do better, economies do better.” The writing is on the wall, the message is clear and the time in now for the women of Nigeria to drive their nation’s development to the next level.


Event Information

The first WOWe conference will gather representation from women from all walks of life from female entrepreneurs to aspiring businesswomen. The forum will also include banks, financial services organizations, development finance and impact fund investment institutions, Government agencies with responsibility for the empowerment of women, SME development organisations, corporations, NGOs and Charities, ICT & mobile companies.

This event will be one of the largest Women Entrepreneur Conferences to hold in Nigeria.

WOWe is sponsored and supported by Eden Lifestyle, Internal Revenue Service Lagos State, QuickBooks Accounting Made Easy, The Wheatbaker Lagos and more!

WOWe also has strong media partners including Forbes Africa, New African Woman Magazine, Ventures Africa, Exquisite Magazine, The Guardian Newspaper, Thisday Style, Bella Naija, Cool FM, Nigeria Info, Wasabi FM, Precious Success, TW Magazine and more!
 

Wande Coal Parts Ways With Sunday Are


Mavin Records artiste, Wande Coal has allegedly parted ways with manager, Sunday Are.
NET gathered that the singer disclosed this to a few associates; saying Are" has ceased to function as his manager and asked that further dealings should be directed to his new management, according to industry sources Investigations carried out by NET reveals that Sunday Are" who is the CEO of an artiste management outfit, List Entertainment has been a long standing associate of the artiste.
Sunday Are' acted in the capacity of a manager to the Mo’ Hits team (which comprised of D’banj, Don Jazzy, Wande Coal, Dr. Sid, D’ Prince and Kay Switch) before the label was disbanded in 2012. Since 2005, he oversaw the careers of the individual artistes as well as a group.
When the label collapsed in 2011, Are continued to manage the career of the newly formed Mavin Records artistes : Wande Coal, D’Prince and Dr. Sid and CEO, Don Jazzy. It is still unclear why Coal who’s working to return to the big league, is parting ways with Are. We could not immediately reach the singer for comments as he was away working in South Africa. And Are was apparently too upset to discuss the matter when we contacted him.
‘If you know me very well, you will know that Wande is too small for me to talk about. Please don’t call me again’. We’re told a new manager, named Nana has already been appointed by the singer. Sources say that for some time, Nana had been the one responsible for most of Wande Coal’s bookings and management. ‘Nana has been Wande’s manager for a while.
Mr. Are" only camouflages as his manager whenever there’s a big deal on the table. In fact he doesn’t really do much, but Wande just gives him that respect as an elderly man, and keeps him on’, one source told us over the weekend. Terfa Tilley-Gyado, a rep for Mavin Records who talked to NET also confirmed that Nana now runs Wande Coal’s management. ‘Are is like the general manager for the Mavin crew, but Nana solely manages Wande Coal, and it is not as a result of any problems between them’.
With his album release date almost around the corner, the ‘Black Diamond’, as Wande is fondly called, must be prepping up to put in place a more committed team that can rejuvenate his career. Are, a veteran percussionist and conga player who has worked with the likes of Orlando Julius, Obesere, Majek Fashek and Lagbaja has excelled in artiste management, as his outfit is also home to songstress, Omawumi, jazz musician, Ayodele and rapper, F-Shaw

Wizkid To Perform On The Same Stage With Jay Z



Wizkid will be performing on the same stage with US rapper and entrepreneur Jay Z at the forth coming annual Yahoo Wireless Festival in London.
The 3-day annual event holds from Friday, July 12 to Sunday, July 14, 2013 at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
Last year’s edition of the festival was graced by celebrated African pop star, D’banj.
With many international features and shows, Wizzy’s profile continues to rise as he continues to push on the doors of international success.
Other performers this year include Snoop Lion, John Legend, Justin Timberlake, Rita Ora, Kendrick Lamar and Trey Songz.

Florentino Perez To Continue As Real Madrid President

Florentino Perez will continue as president of Real Madrid after standing unopposed for re-election, the Primera Division club have confirmed.
photo Florentino Perez will continue as president of Real Madrid after standing unopposed for re-election, the Primera Division club have confirmed.
Madrid's electoral board met today and, with no candidates other than Perez putting themselves forward for election ahead of the deadline, confirmed the 66-year-old would remain in the post.
Perez's investiture ceremony will take place on Tuesday at 1300 local time in the directors' box at the Bernabeu stadium.
Perez, who was widely expected to continue in the post for another four-year term, returned to the Madrid presidency for a second spell in 2009.
He had previously held the post for six highly eventful years from 2000 to 2006, during which time the club won two Primera Division titles and the Champions League, and was characterised by the famous 'Galacticos' policy which saw Madrid bring in the likes of Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane, David Beckham and Ronaldo for massive fees.
During that time Perez also employed six different managers before finally quitting himself in February 2006 after seeing Madrid go three years without winning a major trophy.
Perez returned to the role four years ago after his three possible rivals all withdrew from the election race, with the 57.4million euro bank guarantee seeming to be the big stumbling block.
Following Perez's re-election, Madrid splashed out around £225million on the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Karim Benzema and Xabi Alonso in the summer of 2009, with Manuel Pellegrini appointed coach.
Pellegrini was dismissed the following summer after failing to land any silverware, with Jose Mourinho replacing him.
Mourinho led Madrid to the Primera Division, Copa del Rey and Spanish Supercopa in his three years in charge before leaving the club following last night's season-ending win over Osasuna.
Paris St Germain coach Carlo Ancelotti is favourite to take over from Mourinho.

Buhari Faults Crackdown On Boko Haram

Presidential candidate for the Congress for Progressive Change in the 2011 Presidential election, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd), has frowned on the emergency rule in parts of the North. He alleged that innocent civilians were being killed in the states.
 
Buhari said that Boko Haram members were being killed and their houses demolished unlike the “special treatment” given to the Niger Delta militants by the Federal Government.
He said, “Every Nigerian that is familiar with happenings knows this. The Niger Delta militants started it all. What happened is that the governors of the Niger Delta at that time wanted to win their elections, so they recruited youths and gave guns and bullets to them to use against their opponents to win elections by force.
“After the elections, they asked the boys to return the guns, and the boys refused to do so. Because of that the allowance that was being given to them by the governors was stopped.”
Buhari said his joining the proposed All Progressives Congress was not all about securing the party presidential ticket for the 2015 elections.
He declared, “If APC fails to give me the ticket, I will remain in partisan politics and in the party. Anyone the party picks as its candidate, I will support him because I will remain in the APC.”
Besides, Buhari noted that the problem of the country was that of bad leadership, which the APC was out to change.

Anglican Condemns Attempt To Islamise North


The Church of Nigeria Anglican Communion, has raised the alarm over the threat by the Boko Haram to Islamise the northern part of the country.
 
The church, which made this known on Sunday in a 10-point communiqué after its synod in Lavun Local Government of Niger State, described the Islamic sect plan as “unacceptable”.
The communiqué read, “The plans by the Islamic Boko Haram sect to Islamise the northern part of the country is not acceptable and we are cannot stand and watch them. The intention of the Islamic sect to Islamise the North is not acceptable.”
“We frown on the sustained and systematic attack and killing of Christians and innocent souls in the northern part of the country by the Islamic sect (Boko Haram).”
The Bishop of the Kutigi Diocese, Rt. Rev. Jeremiah Kolo, signed the communiqué entitled ‘What shall we do’.
The synod also commended President Goodluck Jonathan on the imposition of emergency rule on Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states and urged the Federal Government to put more efforts to bringing the culprits of the violence in the North to book.
Meanwhile, the Niger State Governor Babangida Aliyu, has urged Muslims not to deviate from the tenets of their religion.
He stated this on Friday while inaugurating the Tudun Wada Central Mosque.
Aliyu, who urged Muslims to appreciate and understand the religion, noted that every person, irrespective of his religious belief, was creation of Allah.
He said, “When you look at the problems confronting us not only in the North and in many countries of the world, they are more in the Muslim communities. It is because we have left many things undone and we are chasing shadows and as a result of this God is using these problems to caution us.”

Four Killed In Plateau Clashes


Four persons were killed on Saturday when some suspected Fulani herdsmen invaded Gwande village in Manguna district of Bokkos Local Government Area of Plateau State.
Six Fulani herdsmen had invaded the village and attacked a house, killing two people. The residents were said to have mobilised and launched a counter attack, during which process two of the invaders were killed.
A former councillor that represented the area, Mr. Arut Bulus, told our correspondent on Sunday that the herdsmen, vowing to revenge the killing of two of the attackers, were regrouping to carry out another attack.
Bulus said the villagers had abandoned their homes for fear of further attacks.
He said, “Right now, the villagers have all fled their homes because a report came to us that some armed Fulani herdsmen are coming through the forest to attack our people.”
The state Police Public Relations Officer, Mrs. Felicia Anselm, told our correspondent on Sunday that though she had yet to get the report, the police would mobilise their men to ward off any further attack.
“I will call my boss now to inform him of the development, and I am sure we will do everything to prevent any further attack,” she said
Meanwhile, a member representing Jos North/Bassa in the Federal House of Representatives, Mr. Suleiman Kwande, has inaugurated a community police post in Kabong, Jos North Local Government Area, Plateau State.

Nigeria’s Survival Depends On Sea — Navy Chief


Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Dele Ezeoba, has said Nigeria’s wealth, peace and survival depends on the sea, and that the Navy is ready to protect it.
 
Ezeoba said the onus was on the Navy to develop requisite operational capabilities to achieve efficiency in order to tackle emerging operational security threats within the maritime domain.
The CNS said this on Saturday in Calabar, Cross River State, to mark the ceremonial sunset on the occasion of the Nigerian Navy Week 2013.
The event attracted commandants from the Army, Air Force, Police, State Security Services and the Cross River State Governor Liyel Imoke, who was represented by his deputy, Mr. Efiok Cobham.
Ezeoba, whose speech was read by the Flag Officer Commanding, Eastern Naval Command, Rear Admiral Joseph Aikhomu, said efforts were being constantly intensified to put in place a virile fleet that would effectively tackle the security threats in the maritime domain.
The CNS said, “The current dispensation requires that we develop requisite operational capability to achieve optimal efficiency to deal with contemporary and emerging operational security threats particularly within our maritime domain.
“This is given that the wealth, peace and indeed the survival of our nation depends on the sea, the protection of which rests upon the Nigerian Navy.”
The CNS also said in order to meet the mandate given by President Goodluck Jonathan to eradicate crude oil theft, pipeline vandalism and other illegalities in the sea, a strategic guidance had been developed to provide operational framework.
He said, “In fulfillment of the operational objectives as outlined in my strategic guidance, exercise FARAUTA, which took place from November 11 to 17, 2012, in the Bights of Benin and Bonny was the first bold step towards the fight against crude oil theft, illegal bunkering and piracy, among others.
“The exercise paid off as it led to the boarding, search and arrest of vessels. In all, increased patrols by the three operational commands have resulted in the arrest of over 40 vessels and destruction of many barges.”
He said three Mark Two boats and two fast patrol boats were on February 11, 2013 unveiled at the Naval Base in Apapa, Lagos State, to join the fleet of surveillance.
In his address, Cobham said the current security situation in the country called for more aggressive challenge.
While noting that a lot of sacrifice had been made by the Navy and other security agencies to ensure safety of lives and property, he said it was necessary to continue to develop new strategies to tackle emerging challenges.
Meanwhile, the United States of America has concluded arrangement to transfer two of her vessels to the Nigerian Navy to enhance the war against oil theft, piracy and other illegal activities in the maritime environment.
Ezeoba named the two vessels as the United States Navy Survey Ship MCDONELL and the United States Coast Guard Cutter GALLATIN.
“It is expected that the transfer of these ships to the Nigerian Navy would be actualised before the end of the year,” he said.
He also said two ships currently undergoing construction in China would join the Nigerian Naval fleet before the end of 2014.

EXPOSED: Sanusi Lamido's Sexual Escapades With Married Lover Revealed (Photo)


Twenty minutes to midnight on February 25, 2013, and a day before the board of the Central Bank of Nigeria was due to meet, Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi developed a craving for romance—he badly needed a kiss.
The governor, married, with children, grabbed his mobile phone and typed out a message.  “Maybe you should come kiss me before board meeting tomorrow,” Mr. Sanusi wrote and then squeezed the send button.
At about 9 a.m. the next day, Mrs. Maryam Yaro, a married mother of two, an assistant director and subordinate to the governor at the CBN, arrived Sanusi’s unnamed Abuja hotel, seeking to keep the date and help address her boss’ craving for a kiss.  (Insiders say board members, including those who live in Abuja, are usually lodged in hotels ahead of board meetings).
But by the time Mrs. Yaro left the hotel to return to her official desk at the CBN, the duo had also struck out an arrangement to spend the rest of the week together in Lagos.
So, in the evening of Wednesday February 27, Mrs. Yaro flew to Lagos ahead of Mr. Sanusi and checked into a hotel in the city, skipping work, at taxpayers’ expense, on Thursday February 28 and Friday, March 1.
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To keep faith with Mrs. Yaro’s date, the CBN governor arrived Lagos, travelling on a chartered flight, on the night of February 28, and checked into the Federal Palace Hotel, passage and boarding all at taxpayers’ expense.
Both Mr. Sanusi and Mrs. Yaro rendezvoused in the hotel till Sunday when both of them returned to Abuja, it was learnt.
“…I had such a wonderful weekend,” Mrs. Yaro confessed to the governor while aboard her Abuja-bound flight. “You have revived in me what I thought I lost long ago. I thought I lost the passion to love again,” she claimed.
“Alhamdulillahi. Love you,” Mr. Sanusi responded in a measured tone.
Insiders say repeated violation of the statutory code of conduct for public office holders such as hiring his girlfriends and mistresses without complying with public service rules, dating married and unmarried women within the bank, and flirting with them during official work hours have become defining characters of Mr. Sanusi’s governorship of the central bank.
An official of the bank spoke of how Mr. Sanusi had enthroned nepotism at the bank, arbitrarily hiring girlfriends and relatives and engaging in extramarital relationships with staff.
“This man (the CBN governor) is the most morally bankrupt governor the CBN has ever had,” the official, who did not want to be named for fear of retribution, said. “Forget all the pretences, he is a shameless man of loose character.”
Investigations by this newspaper revealed that Mr. Lamido hired his latest mistress, Mrs. Yaro, without complying with the CBN recruitment policy that stressed, “all appointments shall be made on the basis of merit, through a fair and open selection process.”
“The principles underlying the recruitment process are those of fairness, credibility, equal employment opportunities, merit and optimization of career prospects for currently employed staff,” the bank said on its website.
But Mrs. Yaro, insiders say, was hired in July 2012 without adherence to these principles. Those who should know say Mrs. Yaro, who was a staff at the National Programme on Food Security, an agency under the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, was brought into the bank as assistant director without  “advert for the vacancy and after a kangaroo interview.”
When contacted, Mr. Sanusi said due process was followed in hiring Mrs. Yaro.
He said having worked for years in the ministry of agric, Mrs. Yaro came highly recommended and qualified for the job for which she was hired.
The CBN governor continued, “I have known Dr. Yaro since 1981. She was my student in Yola and she later came to ABU Zaria. We have been very good friends but this is not why NIRSAL took her. You may wish to check her CV against all the other CVs in NIRSAL. And she did go through an interview process with the NIRSAL CEO making the decision not CBN HR.
“As for the personal allegations, this is all strange to me but I have a personal policy of not responding to such allegations since in Nigeria anything can be published on any public officer without proof.  I have limited myself to what concerns official allegations and leave you to your God and your conscience on whatever else you want to publish. Thank you for telling me though.”
Mrs. Yaro however declined comments when contacted.
“Be careful what you are saying,” she told one of our reporters on the telephone. “I have nothing to comment to you on anything.”
When asked if she would be willing to respond to specific questions about her trips to Lagos to keep dates with Mr. Sanusi, she simply said, “Whatever it is, I don’t know. Will you just let me be?”
But our investigations revealed that the governor’s claim was far from accurate. Through several interviews and review of records, PREMIUM TIMES was able to determine that Mrs. Yaro and Mr. Sanusi had dated each other for at least six months before she was hired.
Insiders say Mr. Sanusi repeatedly pestered the human resource department of the bank ordering it to bring Mrs. Yaro’s application to him for approval. And once the file reached his table, the governor wasted no time in treating it.
On June 25, 2012, Mr. Sanusi, who was travelling in South Africa at the time, telephoned Mrs. Yaro to break the news to her that he had approved her recruitment in what critics consider a clear conflict of interest and a violation of a provision of Nigeria’s Code of Conduct which stipulates that “a public officer shall not put himself in a position where his interest conflicts with his duties and responsibilities.”
Mrs. Yaro, (whose businessman husband, Ahmed, is largely based in Kaduna but visits Abuja regularly) assumed duties at the CBN in the first week of September 2012 and was deployed to the Development Finance Department.
The department then put her in charge of the bank’s Nigerian Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System For Agricultural Lending, (NIRSAL), a unit that attempts to fix the agricultural value chain, so that banks can lend with confidence to the sector and, encourages banks to lend to the agricultural value chain by offering them strong incentives and technical assistance.
Sources said Mrs. Yaro married Ahmed (or Shuaib, according to another source) six years ago after her first husband, Waisu Yaro Bodinga (then an executive director at the Nigeria Ports Authority) died in the ill-fated ADC plane crash of 2006.
The romance between Mrs. Yaro and Mr. Sanusi became even hotter after she began work at the bank, with the two lovers regularly exchanging telephone calls and text messages during work hours to profess love for each other.
At times, Mrs. Yaro would remain in her office far beyond close of work to enable her to keep appointments with the CBN governor, records show.
Sometimes, Mrs. Yaro would raise concerns about Mr. Sanusi’s other girlfriends and mistresses (such as Sutura and Rose) and how they were blocking her from getting the governor’s full attention, but the relationship continued nonetheless.
Mrs. Yaro also began to have access to confidential information known only to top management and board of the bank, insiders say.
At a point, one source said, she began to strategise to corner contracts for one Goke Akinboro, the Chief Executive Officer of Lagos-based Cellullant Limited, an information technology company. Mr. Akinboro is also described as “very close” to Mrs. Yaro.
On March 15, 2013, the CBN lovers headed to Lagos again for another weekend of fun. The initial plan was for the duo to fly to the nation’s commercial capital on Saturday, March 16, returning to Abuja on Sunday. But the trip had to be brought forward by a day after the lovers realized that the Area Council election in Abuja was holding that Saturday and that movement might be restricted.
Mrs. Yaro arrived Lagos on the night of March 15, and immediately checked into the Radisson Blu Anchorage Hotel on Victoria Island. Mr. Sanusi flew from Kano to Lagos via chartered jet on the bills of the Nigerian taxpayers. He arrived at about 11 p.m., stopped by his Ikoyi home, before dashing to the hotel where Mrs. Yaro was waiting in a seductive dress in Room 23. The lovers spent that night and the next day together in the hotel.
As he flew into Abuja March 17 on a chartered jet, Mr. Sanusi sent a message to Mrs. Yaro saying, “Love. Just landed in Abuja. Thank you for a wonderful weekend.” Mrs. Yaro replied, “Alhamdulillah. I had a wonderful weekend too. I am able to get the 3:15 flight on Arik Air. Love you.”
But in-between those rendezvous in Lagos, Mr. Sanusi and Mrs Yaro also found time to get together elsewhere.  They were to meet on March 11, 2013, in Makurdi but somehow Mrs. Yaro could not make it to the Benue State capital.  But earlier on February 14, (Valentine’s Day), the lovers had a good time together in Maiduguri. Although, the two of them travelled to the city on different missions, they somehow found a way to get together.
At a point, Mrs. Yaro voiced open frustration when Mr. Lamido delayed in taking her calls as she tried, frantically, to track him down. “I’m thinking that one Shuwa girl has snatched you away from me,” Mrs. Yaro wrote in a message. “I don’t trust them (Maiduguri girls) with you.”
A velvet-ranking figure within Nigeria’s economic and political circles, Mr. Sanusi, is generally perceived as one of the intellectual anchors and moral conscience of this administration. When his five-year term expires next year, he has indicated he would not renew his contract. Mr. Sanusi has a well-advertised ambition to become the future emir of his native Kano, where he is already a top chieftaincy holder (Dan Maje Kano). Dan Majen Kano, a historic title, which means Son of Emir-Maje, is reserved for the royal family members from the Kano Habe dynasty.
A zigzag prospect to run for the Nigerian presidency is also believed to be floating in the horizon for Mr. Sanusi.
Multiple sources at both the CBN and First Bank, where Mr. Sanusi was managing director before his appointment to the central bank, describe the governor as an “incurable womanizer.”
“This guy seems unable to resist anything in skirt, and it is unfortunate that a lot of young people look up to him as an example,” one of Mr. Sanusi’s aides in Abuja said, expressing widely held concerns in banking circles that “It is sad that he wouldn’t even let married women be.”
Mr. Sanusi, 51, appointed CBN Governor on June 3 2009, is a smart economist and award-winning banker with a background in risk management.
He holds a graduate degree in economics from the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria and a diploma in Sharia and Islamic Studies from the African International University in Khartoum, Sudan. Today, Mr. Sanusi is also commonly regarded as an important voice in Islamic jurisprudence.
The Banker, the UK-based financial magazine honoured him in 2010 as global Central Bank Governor of the Year as well as African Central Bank Governor of the Year. In 2011, the TIME magazine listed Mr. Sanusi in its annual publication of 100 most influential people.
At the African Banker Awards gala dinner held Wednesday in Morocco, Mr. Sanusi also emerged the “2013 Africa Central Bank Governor of the Year.”
“There  is no doubt that he is a fairly effective banker,” an official of one of Nigeria’s leading banks, who requested anonymity  for fear his bank might be targeted, told PREMIUM TIMES. “But he is a man of zero morality despite his public posturing.  It is really sad.”

Man Arrested For Selling His Son For N.5m


Man Arrested For Selling His Son For N.5m
The Abia State Police Command has arrested a 25-year-old man, Chisom Ihemebirim from Amuzi Obowo in Imo State, for selling his one and half years old son, Chidubem Chisom for N500,000.
The command also arrested one Abraham Ukaiwe, 27, from Asaga Ohafia in AbiaState said to be Ihemebirim’s accomplice in the deal to sell the boy.
Little Chidubem Chisom was said to have been sold to one Mercy Nwachinemere, 45, of Umudi Abayi in Osisioma, Abia State who has also been arrested.
According to the Police Commissioner, Mohammed Tilli Abubakar, little master Chidubem  Chisom was recovered from the buyer.
Parading the suspects, Abubakar said his men moved into action following a report by one Kasarachi John, 23, from Mbawsi in Isiala Ngwa North Council said to be the estranged wife of Ihemebirim.
Kasarachi John, according to the Police Commissioner, reported that sometime in February 2013, she had a misunderstanding with Ihemebirim, her husband which made her to leave his house.
According to her, shortly after,  in March 2013, she received information that their son, Chidubem Chisom, has been sold by the father, Ihemebirim.
Speaking to journalists, Ihemebirim admitted selling the boy for N500, 000. According to him, he used the money to process documents he wanted to use to travel to Libya or Spain. He also claimed that he used part of it to renovate his house.
CP Abubakar said that the fraction of the money was recovered from Ukaiwe, the said accomplice.
The command has also arrested a female suspect, Kate Agharanya 41, for conspiring with one and Onyinyechi Nwogu still at large to sell a baby boy for N200, 000.
The matter the police commissioner said was reported by the mother of the baby, one Victoria Nwachukwu, 20 years, of Obazor Asa in Ukwa West area of Abia state who claimed that she delivered the said baby on May 6, 2013, at Chile Maternity Home in Umunka in Ugwunagbo.
Abubakar who said that the matter is still being investigated, announced that both Onyinyechi Nwogu and the unnamed buyer of the baby were still on the run.
Meanwhile, the Abia police Command also arrested and paraded four suspects for robbing a Catholic school, Daughters of Mary Mother of Mercy [DMMM] at Mbawsi in Isiala Ngwa North Local Government Area of the state.
The suspects were Chimezie Omasi, Odinakachi Ugorji, George Ohia and one Confidence, whose surname, the police said was yet unknown. They were said to have robbed the occupants of the school at gun point.
According to the police Commissioner, they robbed the occupants of the sum of N350, 000 cash, four Nokia Handsets and one Laptop valued at N200, 000.
The police commissioner disclosed that when they were arrested the sum of N97, 200, some of the handsets, one locally made single barrel short gun, the laptop and un registered Ladies Motorcycle said to have bought on the same day by one of the suspects.

Yoruba Actress Arrested With Cocaine Finally Opens Up

Popular Yoruba movie actress, Taiwo Akinwande, popularly known as Yetunde Wunmi, was a regular fixture in the Yoruba film industry for many years displaying exemplary acting talent and nurturing others until six years ago when news circulated that the pretty lady was nabbed with hard drugs.
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She was convicted for cocaine trafficking and sentenced to 2years in prison.
She was too shy to tell her story before. But she finally opened up. See her story below...
“That was the bitter pill that would remain in my system for the rest of my life, and it’s my only regret in life,” she tells The Entertainer.

How I was arrested
It was on September 19, 2006. I was billed to travel to the United Kingdom. So I got to the airport early enough to catch my plane. But then, I was arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency at the Murtala International Airport in Lagos. I was arrested on drug related offences. Initially, I thought I was in a dream, but it later turned out to be a reality. It was a sad experience for me to remember because that event almost cost me my life. I ended up serving a two-year-jail term.
 
Really, I lost so many things to that incident. And it did a lot of damage to my image as an actress and even among my colleagues in the industry. It’s my only regret in life that I had to get involved in drugs. But I thank God that I came out of the mess after serving a two-year jail term. I also thank God that though the situation I found myself was that bad, the news of my drug offence wasn’t that of my obituary. Truly, I have learnt my lessons the hard way.

Lessons learnt
I have said it earlier that I have learnt my lessons the hard way. I learnt that nothing in life is permanent, that there are no permanent friends and enemies. During my travails, I learnt lessons about the ups and downs of life. For instance, a rich man today can become poor tomorrow, and a poor man today can become rich tomorrow. Even, I learnt my lessons about death. That, though life is good and worthy to live, death remains the end of all souls. It’s the end, no matter who you are. It was really, a sad story to tell, but I thank God I am still alive to tell the story.

What I lost
I lost almost everything. For instance, I lost my privacy. I lost my popularity that I have worked hard for, for about three decades. I lost some of my close friends and my relationship with many people broke-up as a result of the sad incident. Nobody would like to relate with an ex-convict. But, honestly, some of them showed great concern and understanding. They saw my problem as a phase in the course of my career and life as well. They really gave me hope that time heals all wounds and that eventually came to pass.

I wouldn’t want to mention names, but there were some of my colleagues that despised me while so many others showed great understanding. They showed me love and concern. It was God that really intervened and strengthened me after I served my two-year jail term. So many people treated my case as that of the prodigal son. The Association of Nigeria Theatre Practitioners (ANTP) actually brought me back to life. They rekindled my hope and my career was put back on track. I was able to overcome the sad experience through the unflinching support of everybody that stood by me during the trying period. It was terrible indeed. But today, the rest is history.

How I got back on my feet
It was the grace of God. Even at a particular point in time, I became confused. I didn’t know where to start from, but God really used some people in the entertainment industry to put my career back on track. Since then, I have been enjoying a breakthrough and I’m now back on my feet.

The truth is that I didn’t allow my past experience to weigh me down. I didn’t allow it to disturb my future. But I was able to cope during that period through the grace of God. My humility also played a very important role in getting me back on track.

It was difficult for me to cope, initially, but one virtue God gave me is humility. And that helped me a lot. Even before the sad incident, I was a very humble person. For me, popularity didn’t get to my head. I don’t brag about anything, but I know quite well that my humility actually helped me a lot during the trying period. I was humble after my humiliating experience, and I felt real great remorse for what actually happened to me. I regretted, and still regret it. In the end, I saw it as my destiny and the sad experience actually humbled me in life.

A new life
With God, everything is possible. Since the sad incident, I have started my life anew. I have repented from all my wrongdoings. I even went to Saudi Arabia in 2011 to perform the Hajj and that afforded me the opportunity of telling Almighty Allah all of my earlier trespasses. I confessed my sins in His presence and I promised never to return to such sins. Today, all that is now in the past. Today, everything is new in my life, and I’m always grateful to Almighty Allah who actually preserved my life during that trying period.
 
Now, I’m hopeful that God has answered my prayer because since the time I came back from Saudi Arabia, everything, I mean my whole life, has become new and I’m back on my feet with renewed hope and vigour.

PHOTOS: Footballer John Utaka Weds In France


Nigerian international, John Chukwudi Utaka married his heartthrob in France over the weekend. The Nigerian striker exchanged marital vows with his 'white' lover in the presence of well-wishers.
Utaka was formerly a player with Portsmouth FC of England along with Kanu Nwankwo. He didn't achieve much success with the club unlike when he played in France.
He later moved back to France where he won the league for Montpellier in a 2-1 win against Auxerre in May 2012. Utaka scored the two goals for Montepellier in the match.
The wedding was attended by Kanu Nwankwo.
 

"You Are Making Me Hypertensive" -Oge Okoye Cries To Fans


"You Are Making Me Hypertensive" -Oge Okoye Cries To FansOge Okoye's PR released the statement below a few days ago regarding comments she has been getting from fans;
"Do you want to kill all our celebs with your bullying? I thought you had learnt after Goldie. Celebrities are human and have feelings. In her attempt to re-brand herself, you bullied Oge Okoye and made her hypertensive. “She’s an mgbeke”…she’s this…she’s that…” you kept firing! While you were busy bullying her for nothing, more talent scouts were noticing her.
You were too busy putting her down to even notice the beautiful concepts, only few with the trained eye and who genuinely understand art, left meaningful comments. Look at all the magazines she has covered, yet instead of encouraging her, you bully her even more. Her first big screen movie with Hollywood stars was just premiered in Lagos and instead of congratulating her, you continued abusing her when you saw photos, with some abusing her dress even though she looked hot. Oge is an only child, please don’t kill her for mother.”
There you have it. The actress is asking you to stop the bullying and encourage her.
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