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NIGERIA NEWSPAPERS: TODAY’S PUNCH NEWSPAPER HEADLINES [10TH AUGUST, 2018].

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EFCC grills ex-DSS DG Ekpenyong who Daura shielded from arrest
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Ten months after resisting arrest, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Thursday arrested a former Director-General of the Department of State Services, Mr Ita Ekpenyong, who led the agency from 2010 to 2015.

Operatives of the DSS had on November 21, 2017 prevented men of the EFCC from arresting Ekpenyong and a former boss of the National Intelligence Agency, Ayodele Oke.

One of our correspondents, who witnessed the arrest of Ekpenyong at his residence at 46 Mamman Nasir Street, Asokoro District, Abuja, reported that EFCC operatives, accompanied by over 20 armed policemen, searched the white mansion for about two hours.

It was, however, learnt that no money was found in the building.

It could not be established if any incriminating document was found in the house.

Around 3.20pm, however, Ekpenyong was taken away in a black Toyota Land Cruiser and driven to the head office of the EFCC in the Wuse 2 area of Abuja.

A source at the EFCC said, “The search was not as fruitful as we had expected it to be because the man had 10 months to dispose of all evidences. We are, however, questioning him and we will get more information.”

When contacted on the telephone, the spokesman for the EFCC, Mr Wilson Uwujaren, confirmed Ekpenyong’s arrest. He, however, declined to provide more information.

“The former DSS boss was brought in this afternoon. He is currently in our custody,” Uwujaren said.

Ekpenyong was, however, released a few hours later to return on Friday for another round of questioning.

Ekpenyong, it was learnt, was under investigation as part of a larger probe into how billions of naira was transferred from the Central Bank of Nigeria to the DSS and the National Intelligence Agency in the build-up to the 2015 general elections.

While $289,202,382 (N57.8bn at the time) was given to the NIA, about N20bn was handed to the Department of State Services.

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IG writes Osinbajo, requests to search Dauras house
Fri, 10 Aug 2018

The Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has written to the Acting President, Yemi Osinbajo, seeking permission to search the residence of the sacked Director-General of the Department of State Services, Lawal Daura.

In a letter written by the IG, titled, “Interim Investigation Report on Criminal Conspiracy to wit trespass, intimidation and unlawful invasion of National Assembly complex with intent likely to cause breach of public peace,” and obtained by The PUNCH on Thursday, the IG recommended that the DSS operatives who partook in the invasion must be also released to the police for questioning.

READ ALSO: PenCom restores 25% lump sum payment to retirees

Idris said the suspect, Daura, confessed in his statement to the police to have deployed operatives to the National Assembly on “a claim of an intelligence report that unauthorised persons were planning to smuggle undisclosed dangerous weapons and incriminating items into the National Assembly.”

The IG said, “ I write to most respectfully appraise Your Excellency that following a petition from your esteemed office to investigate and report findings against Lawal Daura, the sacked DG, DSS, a team of cracked operatives headed by Commissioner of Police, Garba Umar, were deployed and take the suspects into custody for interrogation and investigation.

“It was reported that Daura did conspire with his operatives wearing hood and mask to invade the National Assembly complex. They barricaded the road to the assembly and intimidated members of the National Assembly and workers by forcefully preventing them from performing their legitimate and constitutional duties, thereby committing a crime with intent to incite and wipe up sentiments against the Federal Government of Nigeria.

“The principal suspect, Lawal Daura, was formally arrested and interrogated in line with the allegation made against him.”

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I didnt need WAEC result for admission into US varsity Adeleke
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Femi Makinde, Osogbo The governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Osun State, Senator Ademola Adeleke, has said he gained admission into the university he attended in the United States without presenting his West African School Certificate Examination result. Adeleke said this in Ede on Thursday while reacting to the dismissal of the suit []
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10 feared killed as robbers attack banks in Edo
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Alexander Okere, Benin No fewer than 10 persons have been reportedly killed by suspected armed robbers in Igarra, in the Akoko-Edo Local Government Area of Edo State. The Commissioner of Police, Mr Johnson Kokumo, confirmed the incident to The PUNCH. Although details of the incident were still sketchy as of the time of filing the []
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Defection: APC attacks Saraki again, calls him a traitor, betrayer
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
John Alechenu and Olaleye Aluko The All Progressives Congress on Thursday launched a tirade against the President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, calling him a traitor, betrayer and a man unfit to hold a public office. The partys renewed attack on Saraki was contained in a statement by the acting National Publicity Secretary of []
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We cant reconcile with you, IPOB tells Ohanaeze, South-East govs
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Tony Okafor, Awka The Indigenous People of Biafra has pulled out of a move initiated by Prof. Ben Nwabueze to reconcile the group with the Ohanaeze Ndigbo and South-East governors. In a statement made available to newsmen in Awka, the Anambra State capital on Thursday by IPOBs media and publicity secretary, Emma Powerful, the group []
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EFCC unfreezes Benue accounts, Ortom thanks Nigerians
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
John Charles, Makurdi The Benue State Commissioner for Finance, David Olofu, on Thursday declared that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, had unfrozen the state accounts. Olofu told our correspondent on Thursday that the affected banks informed the state government late on Wednesday of the directives vacating the earlier order. The Chief Press Secretary to []
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NCC, INEC meet on electronic voting
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Everest Amaefule and Oladimeji Ramon The leadership of the Nigerian Communications Commission and the Independent Electoral Commission met in Abuja on Thursday to receive a document containing proposal on the possible adoption of electronic voting in the 2019 general elections. Those present at the meeting included the Executive Vice Chairman of the NCC, Prof Umar []
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Supplementary budget: National Assembly reconvenes Tuesday
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
John Ameh, Abuja Finally, the National Assembly will reconvene on Tuesday, next week, after days of being under pressure to do so. The agenda will primarily be the supplementary budget and virement proposals President Muhammadu Buhari laid before lawmakers before they embarked on their current annual recess last month. The bulk of the proposals will []
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Buhari, Gowon, Ambode, Amosun, others hail Williams at 99
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Olalekan Adetayo and Feyisayo Popoola President Muhammadu Buhari, a former military Head of State, Yakubu Gowon; Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode; and his Ogun State counterpart, Ibikunle Amosun, led other eminent Nigerians to celebrate the doyen of the accounting profession in Nigeria, Chief Akintola Williams, who clocked 99 on Thursday. In a statement by his []
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Buhari congratulates Lawrence Onoja at 70, Atta at 90
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday congratulated a former Governor of Plateau and Katsina states, Maj.-Gen. Lawrence Onoja (retd.), who turns 70 on Friday. He also congratulated Ambassador Abdullahi Atta who turns 90 on Friday. In a separate statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr Femi Adesina, the President felicitated []
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Krisbethel proprietress gives parenting tips
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Oladimeji Ramon The Proprietress, Krisbethel College, Chief C. O. Ojo, has said the roles of parents in the academic and moral excellence of their children have become more challenging in the 21st century than in the past. She noted that as a result of their tight work schedules, many parents had distanced themselves from their []
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Well never compromise on workers welfare TUC
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Samuel Awoyinfa, Abeokuta The President, Trade Union Congress, Comrade Bobboi Kaigama, says the leadership of the union will not compromise on fighting for the welfare of Nigerian workers. He said this on Thursday in Abeokuta at the 4th triennial delegates conference of the Ogun State Council of the Trade Union Congress. Kaigama, who was represented []
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LASG moves to boost reading culture
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Sesan Olufowobi The Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, has approved the LagosReads Competition to improve reading culture among residents. The Special Adviser to the Governor on Education, Mr Obafela Bank-Olemoh, in a statement on Thursday to announce the Books-of-the-Month for August, said the maiden edition of the competition would hold in October 2018. He said, []
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Northern monarchs meet in Kaduna over polio scourge
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Godwin Isenyo, Kaduna A meeting of emirs, chiefs drawn from all the 19 northern states held in Kaduna on Thursday over the polio scourge in the region. The meeting, which held at the late Gen. Hassan Usman Katsina House, Kaduna, appraised efforts of traditional rulers toward the eradication of polio and other related diseases ravaging []
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Ambode seeks modern governance
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Sesan Olufowobi Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State has said his administration is keen on modernising governance, urging workers in the state to brace themselves for the challenge. Ambode spoke on Thursday at two-day training for workers in Ikeja, saying his administration was examining areas, institutions and practices in the state that needed overhauling to []
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Dickson loses mother to cancer in US
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Simon Utebor, Yenagoa Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has confirmed the passing on of his beloved mother, Mrs GoldCoast Dickson. She was aged 72. The governor in a statement on Thursday by his Chief Press Secretary, Francis Ottah-Agbo, said the late GoldCoast died of cancer at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Centre, []
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Have the police been even-handed in handling political disputes
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
We cannot say the police are not handling disputes well. Sometimes, there is information or intelligence which the police act upon, but which we do not have. Sometimes, the intelligence is from the Department of State Services or from other sister agencies and this helps them to forestall breakdown of law and order. So, I []
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Lagos decries illegal ram markets
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Samson Folarin The Lagos State Government has lamented illegal ram markets and sales points in the state. The Executive Secretary, Lagos State Environmental Sanitation Corps, Mrs Idowu Mohammed, said the display of rams along rail lines, roadsides, streets, under the bridges and other unauthorised places constituted environmental nuisance. Mohammed spoke while addressing members of the []
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Melania Trumps Slovenian parents get US citizenship
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
The Slovenian-born parents of US First Lady, Melania Trump, became US citizens at a naturalization ceremony in New York on Thursday, their immigration lawyer Michael Wildes confirmed to AFP. President Donald Trumps in-laws, Viktor and Amalija Knavs, took the oath of citizenship, Wildes said. READ ALSO:Man abandons home after wife discovers nude photos of lover []
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Buhari congratulates Akintola Williams at 99
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Olalekan Adetayo, Abuja President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday expressed best wishes to renowned Chartered Accountant, Chief Akintola Williams, as he clocked 99 years. READ ALSO:Man calls off wedding over fiancees sex with stranger In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, the President said he joined the Governor of []
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Armed robbers kill 10, set ablaze area commanders car in attack on Edo banks
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Alexander Okere, Benin No fewer than 10 persons have been reportedly killed by suspected armed robbers in Igarra, in the Akoko-Edo Local Government Area of Edo State. The Commissioner of Police, Mr. Johnson Kokumo, confirmed the incident to our correspondent. Although details of the incident were still sketchy as of the time of filing the []
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Education: Summit cant fix funding gaps, priority does
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Punch Editorial Board A summit on funding education in the country will soon be held at the behest of President Muhammadu Buhari. It is premised on the belief that government alone cannot shoulder the responsibility, given the other services competing for attention. The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Sonny Echono, who gave the hint at []
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Saraki should step down for sake of morality ‘Sagay
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja The Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption, Prof Itse Sagay (SAN), has called on Senate President Bukola Saraki to vacate his seat for the sake of morality. Sagay said this on Thursday during a telephone interview with our correspondent. The senior advocate said having a member of the minority party as the []
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Osun: INEC tackles vote-buying, bars phones at polling booths
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Femi Makinde and Olaleye Aluko The Resident Electoral Commissioner in Osun State, Mr Olusegun Agbaje, has said the Independent National Electoral Commission, in collaboration with security agents, will do everything to prevent vote-buying during the September 22 governorship election in the state. The REC, who said this in Osogbo on Thursday, at a meeting held []
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Anambra begins arrest of aspirants without tax clearance
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Tony Okafor, Awka The Anambra State Government has said it will commence the arrest of political aspirants in the state who do not pay their taxes and levies accordingly. The Managing Director, Anambra State Signage and Advertising Agency, Mr Jude Emecheta, stated this in an interview with newsmen in his office on Thursday. He said []
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I won’t contest any post in 2019 ‘Lai Mohammed
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Success Nwogu The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, has ruled out the possibility of contesting any position in 2019. He said that his task was to work with like minds to wrest power from the current political leadership in Kwara State. Mohammed spoke on Thursday during a stakeholders’ meeting in Ilorin, the []
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House of Reps 2019: Ondo PDP leadership adopts Mimiko’s aide
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Peter Dada, Akure The leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party in Ifedore Local Government Area of Ondo State, on Thursday, adopted a former Commissioner for Information in the state, Mr Kayode Akinmade, as its candidate for the February 2019 House of Representatives election in the Idanre/Ifedore Federal Constituency of the state. Members of the party []
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I’ll contest gov election under APC, says Alhassan
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Odutayo Odusanya The Minister of Women Affairs and Social Development, Senator Aisha Alhassan, said contrary to speculations, she had not defected from the All Progressives Congress, disclosing that the party would be the platform under which she would contest again for the Taraba State governorship election in 2019. She explained that her ‘political enemies’ had []
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$43m debt: Shareholders reject sale of 9Mobile
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Eniola Akinkuotu, Abuja Shareholders of 9Mobile have cautioned the Central Bank of Nigeria, the Nigerian Communications Commission and others involved in an ongoing negotiation to sell the telecommunication firm not to proceed with the transaction in view of a pending case before the Federal High Court in Abuja. The shareholders ‘ Afdin Ventures Limited and []
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PenCom restores 25% lump sum payment to retirees
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Nike Popoola The National Pension Commission has suspended the payment of 20 per cent lump sum to retirees under the Contributory Pension Scheme and directed all Pension Fund Administrators to revert to the old template of 25 per cent. The acting Director-General, PenCom, Mrs Aisha Dahir-Umar, stated this in Lagos on Thursday at an insurance []
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Power grid collapse persists, drops twice in two months
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja Nigeria’s electricity grid is still witnessing system collapse as it recorded total failure twice in the last two months. Figures obtained by our correspondent from the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing in Abuja on Thursday showed that the system collapsed once in June and it recorded another in July. In []
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What to do when your bank closes your account
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
One of the most frustrating experiences is when your bank closes your account. According to www.thebalance.com, it is important to realise that just as you can choose which bank you do business with, your bank can also choose not to do business with you. There are laws in place that prevent banks from closing accounts, []
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Pension assets rise to N8.23tn
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Nike Popoola Total assets under the Contributory Pension Scheme rose to N8.23tn at the end of the second quarter of 2018, figures obtained from the National Pension Commission on Thursday showed. The figures specifically indicated that the number of contributors grew by 312,291 from 7.89 million in December 2017 to 8.14 million as of June []
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LCCI canvasses support for service sector
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Anna Okon The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry has urged the government and the Central Bank of Nigeria to extend the support shown to agriculture and manufacturing to the service sector of the economy. Speaking during a media briefing on the state of the economy recently, the President, LCCI, Mr Babatunde Ruwase, said that []
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NSIA raises NBET’s liquidity with $417.4m
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja The Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority on Thursday announced the payment of a total of $417.46m to the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company Plc. The transfer follows the expiry of the four years investment term. The NSIA in a statement issued in Abuja said the $417.46m was transferred in three tranches made up []
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BoI unveils finance scheme for leather manufacturers
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Anna Okon To improve capacity of operators in the leather products manufacturing sector and intensify import substitution, especially for those in Aba cluster, the Bank of Industry has unveiled the Aba Finished Leather Goods Cluster Financing programme targeted at over 150,000 artisans in the cluster. According to the bank, the financing programme, which will see []
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31,594 microenterprises receive FG’s interest-free loans
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Nike Popoola The Federal Government, through the Bank of Industry, has disbursed MarketMoni loans to 31,594 microenterprises in Lagos State. MarketMoni loans are zero-interest loans available under the Government Enterprise and Empowerment Programme, one of the National Social Investment Programmes of the Federal Government. According to a statement, MarketMoni beneficiaries in Lagos and key stakeholders []
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Jaiz to commence disbursement of $20m SMEs fund
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Ifeanyi Onuba, Abuja The Managing Director, Jaiz Bank Plc,Hassan Usman has said the bank would soon begin the disbursement of the $20m facility for operators in the Small and Medium Enterprises sector of the economy. He said this on Thursday in Abuja during a chat with journalists. The bank had in March signed the agreement []
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NCAA licenses new indigenous aircraft maintenance company
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Maureen Ihua-Maduenyi The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority has given approval for a new indigenous aircraft maintenance, repair and overhaul company, 7 Star Global Hangar, to commence operations. The Chief Executive Officer, 7 Star Global Hangar, Isaac Balami, said on Thursday that the firm would commence operations in the coming week, and would ensure that a []
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Amaechi represents Africa at UN road safety forum
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, who was recently appointed as an advisory board member of the United Nations Road Safety Trust Fund, on Thursday represented Nigeria and Africa at the inaugural meeting of the board at the UN Secretariat in Geneva, Switzerland. The UNRSTF was established in April 2018 to address []
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Buyers snap up Nigerian crude as prices drop
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Femi Asu The decline in the prices of Nigerian crude oil has helped end a week-long deadlock between sellers and buyers, and key grades such as Forcados and Bonny Light were seeing a steady flow of trade. Differentials for the nation’s oil cargoes slid again on Thursday, according to Reuters. Shell was said to be []
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Nationwide suppliers of breeding snails
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Arinze Onebunne Jovana Farms encompasses a vast range of experience in the field of snail breeding and production that would have accumulated many years of work in snail farming. Our goal is and has always been to focus on quality, not quantity, and to promote honesty, sincerity and integrity in our service to all breeders []
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NDIC seeks clarity on role as banks’ liquidator
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Feyisayo Popoola The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation has called on the National Assembly to include in the amendment to the NDIC Act, 2007 a provision that states clearly its role as the sole liquidator of banks licensed deposit-taking institutions. The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, NDIC, Ibrahim Umaru, disclosed this at the NDIC retreat for members []
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100 Nigerians learn Chinese agric techniques
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Adelani Adepegba, Abuja No fewer than 100 young Nigerians have been selected to participate in modern Chinese agriculture techniques, which is expected to increase the capacity of the beneficiaries and enhance their productivity. The beneficiaries, who are participating in a three-week overseas training course, which was facilitated by CGCOC Agriculture Development Company, in Abuja, []
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NACCIMA lauds FG on 5% credit facility to MSMEs
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Anna Okon The Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture has commended the Federal Government for its recent decision to establish a five per cent credit facility for the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises sector. At the maiden edition of the MSME Award on August 2, the Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, []
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FG must enact policies to support small businesses
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Dayo Ojerinde The Executive Director, Enterprise Development Centre, Pan-Atlantic University, Mr Peter Bamkole, has stressed the need for the Federal Government to enact new policies that will drive the growth of small and growing businesses in the country. Bamkole, who stated this at the West Africa Regional Conference of the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs []
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The secret to leveraging digital marketing for businesses
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Yes, most businesses want to grow online. After all, there are potentially about 3.2billion people who use the Internet, which means your services or business have the potential to reach any of the 3.2billion people who are online. So, if there are these huge number of people online who are waiting to be harvested, while []
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Madesoftlogic unveils software for entrepreneurs
Fri, 10 Aug 2018
Ozioma Ubabukoh An indigenous technology company, Madesoftlogic, has unveiled a cloud-based Point of Sale software ‘ ESOPOS, saying that it is a social marketplace solution for retailers, wholesalers and other Small and Medium-scale Enterprises in the country. The Chief Executive Officer, Madesoftlogic, Mrs Faith Imade, said the new solution was part of the company’s enterprise []
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