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Abia Secures $125m Loan To Implement 2024 Budget

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Abia State Governor, Alex Otti, says the state government plans to secure loans to implement the 2024 Budget, adding that already, the Islamic Development Bank has approved $125 million for the state.

Otti disclosed this Monday during a chat with journalists in Umuahia, the state capital.

He added that the African Development Bank has also approved some funds for the state.

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The governor said, “Two days ago, the Islamic Development Bank approved the sum of $125m for us under AB Seed, as well as the African Development Bank, AfDB. All is yet to be drawn until after perfection.

READ ALSO: Otti Clears Air On N1.5billion For Two Hilux Vehicles In Abia Budget

“We have received offers of loan from commercial banks, but we have not drawn on any of them. We do not want to draw loans until we need them and will repay when we have liquidity, and we will pay later.”

On wage awards or salary increase, the governor assured workers that his administration had not withdrawn its promise on that, stating that there is already a committee in place on the matter.

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We had promised that by the end of this month, we will resolve the lingering pension issues. In our executive council meeting today, we had some resolutions, and soon, pensioners will be settled,” he said.

According to him, the local government accounts are not tampered with, stating, “Mayors are grading roads and building health centres. I don’t know where else they are getting the money from.”

READ ALSO: Appeal Court Affirms Otti’s Election As Abia Governor; PDP Calls For Calm

On infrastructure, the governor said, “Abia will continue with our massive road rehabilitation, light up Abia, improvement in the health system and the resolve to retrieve education system that has been going down”, adding that 170 primary schools and 51 secondary schools have been earmarked to be rehabilitated so that at the end of the year, all schools will be fully rehabilitated.

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He said the state government has designed the best models for Abia schools so that “the Abia standard schools will look a certain way.”

He added that trained teachers will teach students what is relevant in the 21st century, including the internet, renewable energy, and digital technology, among others to make Abia students competitive in line with global practices.

However, the state government, he said, would ensure the quality and skills necessary to teach the students by ensuring the right training for the teachers, stating “We have received lots of support from multilateral agencies. We are not alone. ”

On health, he said, “We will continue to improve healthcare delivery in the state”, stating also that in terms of food security, the state has a lot of initiatives to deal with hunger and is working round the clock to ensure that all lands in Abia will be cultivated this planting season.

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CAC To Cancel Certificates Of BDCs With Revoked Licences

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The Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC) has said it would cancel the certificates of incorporation of Bureaux De Change(BCDs) whose licences have been revoked by the Central Bank of Nigeria( CBN).

The Nation reported in February the CBN revoked the licences of 4,173 Bureau De Change operators over their failure to meet regulatory guidelines.

In a statement by its acting Director, Corporate Communications, Sidi Hakama, CBN explained that the regulatory provisions flouted include nonpayment of all necessary fees within the stipulated period.

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CBN said: “The affected institutions failed to observe at least one of the following regulatory provisions: Payment of all necessary fees, including licence renewal, within the stipulated period in line with the guidelines.

READ ALSO: FEC Steps Down Projects From Past Govts For Review

“Rendition of returns in line with the guidelines; compliance with guidelines, directives, and circulars of the CBN, particularly Anti-Money Laundering, Countering the Financing of Terrorism and Counter-Proliferation Financing regulations.”

However, in line with the above directive by the CBN, the CAC in a notice on its website on Wednesday, said the certificates would be cancelled within three months if the affected companies do not change the names and objects of such companies.

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The general public is hereby informed that following the revocation of the operational licenses of 4,173 Bureau De Change companies by the Central Bank of Nigeria vide a Federal Republic of Nigeria Official Gazette (Vol. 111) No. 37 of February 27, 2024 for noncompliance with Regulatory Standards, the Corporate Affairs Commission in the exercise of its powers under section 8(1)(e) of the Companies and Allied Matters Act, 2020 advises these companies to within three months from the date of this publication, change the names and objects of such companies.

“Failure to change the names and objects within the stipulated time frame shall result in cancellation of certificate of incorporation and dissolution. It is to be noted that it is unlawful for a company whose certificate has been deemed dissolved to carry on business,” the CAC notice reads.

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FG Suspends Taxes On Maize, Wheat, Rice, Others

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The Federal Government has suspended duties, tariffs and taxes on some essential food items imported through land and sea borders.

Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Abubakar Kyari, announced this at the National Press Centre, Abuja.

Kyari also said the Federal Government has also inaugurated the Renewed Hope National Livestock Transformation Implementation Committee to develop and implement policies that prioritize livestock development and align with the National Livestock Transformation Plan.

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He stated that the listed food items, which include maize, wheat, husked brown rice and cowpeas, will enjoy a 150-day Duty-Free Import Window.

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He added that the move is part of the Presidential Accelerated Stabilization and Advancement Plan, which is aimed at achieving food security and economic stability in the country.

According to him: “The Federal Government has announced a 150-day Duty-Free Import Window for Food Commodities, suspension of duties, tariffs and taxes for the importation of certain food commodities (through land and sea borders). These commodities include maize, husked brown rice, wheat and cowpeas.

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READ ALSO: Court Orders Buhari’s Minister To Account For N729bn Payment To Poor Nigerians

“Under this arrangement, imported food commodities will be subjected to a Recommended Retail Price (RRP).

“I am glad to reiterate that the Government’s position exemplifies standards that would not compromise the safety of the various food items for consumption.

“In addition to the importation by the private sector, the Federal Government will import 250,000MT of wheat and 250,000MT of maize. The imported food commodities in their semi-processed state will target supplies to the small-scale processors and millers across the country.”

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CAC Extends PoS Registration Deadline 

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The Corporate Affairs Commission has announced the approval to extend the mandatory Point of Sales agents, super agents and sole agents registration to September 5th, 2024.

The commission made the announcement in a statement signed by its management and posted on its Facebook page on Saturday, giving a 60-day extension.

It said the extension is to give sufficient time to operators particularly those in remote areas who might have encountered network challenges to so register and continue with their businesses.

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The statement read, “The Corporate Affairs Commission wishes to notify Fintech Operators also known as Point of Sales Operators that the initial deadline of 7th July 2024 given for the registration of sole Agents, Super Agents and Agents has been extended for sixty days beginning from 7th July 2024 to the 5th September 2024.

“This is to give sufficient time to Operators particularly those in remote areas who might have encountered network challenges to so register and continue with their businesses.”

It added operators who continue to disobey after the new deadline will risk losing their businesses and facing prosecution for assisting criminal activities.

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“Operators who fail or refuse to register at the end of the extended deadline run the risk of losing such businesses and prosecution for aiding and abetting criminal activities,” it said.

 

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