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Keystone Bank clarifies reports on its meeting with House of Representatives committee on recovery

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Keystone Bank Limited has said that reports in some sections of the online media on its meeting with the House of Representatives’ Ad Hoc Committee on Assessment and Status of All Recovered Loots Movable and Immovable Assets on Federal Government’s $40 million funds which were in its custody are wrong.

A statement on Sunday signed by Dr. Michael Agamah, Keystone Bank’s General Counsel and Company Secretary, said the details of the meeting have been misrepresented in the media, stressing that the sum of money in issue, which came into its position in the normal and ordinary course of business, was not a “recovered loot” but rather belonged to the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC). The statement further clarified that at no time did the representatives of the bank disclose to the committee at the sitting that the bank was coerced by the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN, to convert the said fund at N305 per dollar.
According to Dr. Agamah: “Some sections of the online news media, while reporting what transpired at the sitting of the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on Assessment and Status of All Recovered Loots Movable and Immovable Assets, have unfairly misrepresented Keystone Bank Limited’s disclosures to the committee. While we cannot deny the right of the press to freely disseminate information to the public, we believe that such right should be exercised responsibly and in a manner that does not infringe on the corresponding rights of other members of the public.

“We wish to state the following facts for the records:

“The money in issue was not a ‘recovered loot’. The sum involved belonged to NNPC which came into the position of Keystone Bank in the normal and ordinary course of business. The deposit was subject to mutually agreed terms and conditions, which included repayment terms applicable to other deposits of a similar nature.”

The bank’s counsel further disclosed that the exchange rate used at the material time to determine the equivalent of the $40 million was the official rate, and that “the parties to this transaction were not at liberty to have recourse to parallel market rates, which is what the trending histrionic reporting appears to be suggesting.”

“We did not inform the Ad-hoc Committee during our presentation that the Honorable Attorney General of the Federation ‘forced’ us to ‘convert recovered loot at N305 per dollar’. Such an unduly sensational headline, in our opinion, is a disservice to the profession of journalism, and antithetical to the objectivity and accuracy which responsible reporting is known for.

“The processes that culminated in our bank repaying in full, NNPC’s deposits with us are well documented, and based on mutual negotiations between our bank and the owner of the funds.

“We reiterate that at no time did we insinuate that the Honorable Attorney General of the Federation acted improperly, forced us to transfer or acted outside the powers of his office.

“Our bank has discharged its obligation to its customer under a regular and validated framework, the same way we honour our obligations to all our customers,” he said.

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One dies as bushfire destroys over 90 farmlands in Yobe

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The Yobe State Government, through the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), has confirmed the death of one person in a bush fire that gutted farmlands in some communities in the Gulani Local Government Area of the state.

SEMA, via its verified Facebook page, gave the confirmation after its response team carried out an assessment visit to the affected communities.

It also noted that over 90 farmers, who were at the eve of harvest, lost their farmlands to the disaster.

“In the early hours of Tuesday the 30th and 1st of December, 2021; over 90 farmers in Gulani local government who are at the eve of harvest lost their farmlands due to bushfire with one farmer reported dead.

“SEMA response team along with the LGA Chair visited the scene to commiserate with the victims on behalf of the Government and to conduct on the spot assessment”, the agency posted.

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It disclosed that five communities, Bularafa town, Makera Village, Makera Fili, Juggolgam as well as Gulani town, were affected.

“While commiserating with the victims, the Executive Secretary of SEMA Dr. Mohammed Goje assured the victims of Governor Mai Mala Buni’s readiness to come to their plights and support them within available resources to cushion the hardship they might encounter after investing everything for this harvest”, it assured.

Recall that DAILY POST reported that Gulani is regarded as one of the food baskets of the state, hence many expressed concern that the bushfire which destroyed farmlands in the area may affect crop production this year in the state.

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One dies as bushfire destroys over 90 farmlands in Yobe

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Geodesists proffer solution to incessant building collapse in Lagos, others

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Geodesists under the auspices of the Nigeria Association of Geodesy (NAG) have said that lack of deformation surveys for monitoring of structures is the major factor responsible for frequent building collapse in Lagos State and other major cities in the country.

The association, which is a group of scientists and researchers specialised in scientific areas of surveying, said this in a communique issued at the end of their annual conference, theme “Geodetic Solutions to Multi-Disciplinary Problems”, held at Federal School of Surveying, Oyo.

DAILY POST recalls that a 21-story building collapsed on November 1st in the Ikoyi area of Lagos State. No fewer than 40 people lost their lives as a result of the incident.

Our correspondent recalls that another building on November 17th collapsed in the Badagry area of Lagos State.

NAG has however said that the absence of deformation surveys for monitoring of structures such as high-rise buildings, bridges, and dams is responsible for the frequent building collapse in Lagos and other cities.

The association, in the communique made available to DAILY POST through its President, Professor Timothy Oluwadare Idowu, insisted that the only solution to reduce incessant building collapse is to ensure speedy implementation and compliance to the Federal Government’s policy on deformation monitoring of infrastructures.

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NAG suggested that an acceptable format for the generation and presentation of deformation monitoring data should also be developed, in order to reduce incessant building collapse across the country.

The association explained that the alarming rate of retreating Lake Chad is a major international boundary issue that has consequential conflict potentials in the country.

It observed that the “Absence of deformation surveys for monitoring of structures such as high-rise buildings, bridges and dams is responsible for the frequent collapses of such structures in the country.

“Inadequate monitoring and poor understanding of subterraneous activities particularly in areas of intensive mining results in the poor estimation of the environmental impacts of these activities.

“Lack of accurate geoid model for the country is a major problem in the development of a common and unified reference system for the country. Insufficiency of gravity data in the country is a setback for geoid determination and modeling.

“The alarming rate of retreating Lake Chad is a major international boundary issue which has consequential conflict potentials for major socio-economic and national security concerns”.

NAG while speaking further suggested that there is a need to ensure speedy implementation and compliance to the Federal Government’s policy on deformation monitoring of infrastructures so as to reduce incessant cases of building collapse in the country.

“Speedy implementation and compliance to the Federal Government’s policy on deformation monitoring of infrastructures. An acceptable format for the generation and presentation of deformation monitoring data should also be developed. An acceptable format for the generation and presentation of deformation monitoring data should also be developed.

“Geodetic solutions to the spatial dynamics of Lake Chad retreating shorelines should be adopted for sustainable planning and management of the socio-economic activities and the mitigation of environmental impacts of the shoreline retreat, particularly as it relates to the Nigeria border sectors where significant variations are noticeable.

“Geodesy should be considered to stand alone as a full departmental programme in an appropriate faculty/school within university and polytechnic systems to deeply enrich researches in geodesy options like space geodesy, marine geodesy and geophysical exploration amongst others”.

Geodesists proffer solution to incessant building collapse in Lagos, others

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Idoma billionaire businessman, Ochacho, Sen Abah Moro meet Ortom on Benue development

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A billionaire businessman and philanthropist, Mohammed Adah, popularly known as Ochacho, on Wednesday, met with the Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom to discuss ways of developing the state.

Ochacho and his entourage were led to the Benue Peoples House in Makurdi, the state capital, by the Senator representing Benue South Senatorial District, Comrade Patrick Abba Moro.

Governor Ortom, while addressing the press after meeting with Ochacho, acknowledged the infrastructural developmental strides of the Ochacho Foundation particularly in the construction of roads in Benue South.

He said although Ochacho is not into politics, he is a Benue son who is adding value to the development of the state and needs collaboration.

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Ochacho’s younger brother, Alex Enokela Ogbe, who is the CEO of the foundation, in a remark, expressed gratitude to God for making the Ochacho Foundation representative of good works.

He urged his supporters to remain calm as they will soon hear from him on the way forward.

Other members of the delegation included the State Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Sir John Ngbede, members of the Benue State House of Assembly from Zone C, and Chairman of Ado local government council, Hon. James Oche.

Others are Prof. Agbo Madaki, Hon. Chris Aba, Hon Mrs. Abeje Egwa, PDP state Woman leader, Hon Egli Johnson Ahubi, former Deputy Speaker BNSHA, Hon Mike Audu, House of Assembly Member, Adoka/Ugboju among many others.

Idoma billionaire businessman, Ochacho, Sen Abah Moro meet Ortom on Benue development

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