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Import Waivers: FG Loses N4.6tr in Two Years

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About N4.6 trillion was lost by the Federal Government to the waivers that were granted to importers in 2017 and 2018, it was learnt.

The loss was incurred  through the Finance Ministry due to non-implementation of the Import Duty Exemption Certificate (IDEC) project.

To stop the trend, the ministry approached the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) for assistance.

The ICRC yesterday issued the Full Business Case Certificate of Compliance for the Import Duty Exemption Certificate (IDEC) waiver to check further revenue loss.

In a statement by her Special Adviser on Media & Communications, Paul Ella Abechi, Finance Minister Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, commended the ICRC Director-General for expediting action on the project.

She urged officials of her ministry staff to “take full advantage of the IDEC portal and put it into full use to enable the Federal Government get full value for its revenues.”

The Full Business Case Compliance Certificate is for the Development, Deployment and Management of Automated Customs Gateway Portal for IDEC under a Public Private Partnership (PPP) arrangement with Forecore Technology Solution Limited, as the preferred partner to Develop, Deploy, Manage and Transfer for a 10-year concession period.

Mrs. Ahmed lamented that government has “been experiencing significant drain in revenues due to the inability to adequately control the IDEC processes. It is really a good time for me that this project that I was really particular about since I came is coming to operation.”

Calling for the full implementation of the project, she noted: “the Ministry of Finance will have to get the approval of the Federal Executive Council before the Public Private Partnership (PPP) of the project will take full course.

“The portal will help us control, track and monitor the IDEC that we issue, but also to monitor the performance of the companies that we give this IDEC to and we will also be able to interface the IDEC system with the Nigeria Customs Service.”

The ICRC Director-General, Chidi Izuwah, described the IDEC as a laudable project that could be of great and urgent importance to enable the country cut the huge revenue loses to the tune of over N2 trillion due to manual processes.

Izuwah said: “The statement in the minister’s 12th June, 2018 letter that the non-implementation of this project caused a revenue loss of N2.5 trillion in 2017 and N2.1 trillion in 2018, we considered this a national revenue emergency and we gave it the needed attention and turned it around very quickly.”

Izuwah further noted that the ministry of Finance under Section 12 of the ICRC Act, is required to diligently supervise this project and ensue that government realises full value, the interest of government protected and it reap the full benefits of the project.

He added that on the other hand, the ICRC, under Section 10 of its Act, has a mandate to collaborate with the ministry and regularly inspect the project and ensure compliance by the public and the private institutions.

He also appealed to the minister to help the Commission and the Presidential Initiative on Continuous Audit (PICA) to finalise on its discussion concerning the Special Concession Account, which according to him, would be a huge opportunity to increase the revenue that is available to the government and block leakages.

The minister in her response, promised to meet with the Permanent Secretary, Special Duties and the Accountant-General of the Federation “to make sure that the account is not only put in place but put to full use.”

The Nation

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Stanbic IBTC Showcases Strong CSI Through Together4ALimb Initiative, Others

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As a socially responsible organisation, Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC is big on positively impacting lives within its host communities in Nigeria through its Corporate Social Investment (CSI) initiatives.

Stanbic IBTC’s CSI is hinged on three core pillars: education, health, and economic empowerment, and aims to meaningfully contribute to enhancing the wellbeing of Nigerian communities, especially at the grassroots.

One of such is the Together4ALimb initiative, where the company provides support to enhance the quality of life of children with missing limbs. Through the provision of prosthetics and educational trust funds worth millions of naira, Stanbic IBTC ensures these young people can live a normal and productive life like their counterparts.

The Organisation understands the need to make an impact in the lives of children living with missing limbs, either by birth or via accidents, and is determined to do so through its signature CSI. It is important to give these children hope for the future, and enable them see the endless possibilities for greatness in life, irrespective of societal prejudices they face owing to their circumstances,  which could pose a threat to the achievement of their dreams and aspirations. The educational trust support provides a platform for  young people to access quality education needed to enable them maximize their potential and become whatever they want to be.

The signature CSI comes with an awareness drive, “Together4ALimb charity walk”, which is designed to draw attention to this health challenge and hopefully garner financial and government support for survivors. The annual Together4ALimb walk has recorded over 5,000 participants since inception.

Stanbic IBTC reiterates its commitment to empowering and creating better narratives for communities in Nigeria. In 2021, the Organisation took on several value-driven charitable initiatives such as  school renovations, orphanage, nursing homes and special needs centre visitations, , all targeted at empowering and enriching the lives of less privileged Nigerians.

A memorable CSI initiative taken on last year by the organization was a visit to the Ketu Special Children Centre, where the organisation presented medical and physiotherapy equipment to the facility. The donations made will go a long way to help improve the wellbeing of children living with cerebral palsy, a condition which causes other health issues like vision impairment, hearing and speech problems, and learning disabilities.

Other CSI initiatives taken on by Stanbic IBTC last year include the presentation of hospital equipment to Batagarawa Primary Health Care, Katsina; presentation of a CT Scan room and other medical facilities to Mother and Child Hospital, Kano State; the donation of medical items to Mother and Child Hospital, Ebonyi State; the commissioning of a borehole donated to the LEA Primary School FCT Abuja; renovation of the Antenatal Care Unit at General Hospital, Mushin, Lagos, as well as empowering young people via financial knowledge on the World Savings Day in various schools nationwide and mentoring sessions for students at Estate Senior Grammar School, Ilupeju, amongst others

Stanbic IBTC is focused on delivering relevant and impactful CSI projects in communities where development is most needed. In 2022, Stanbic IBTC promises to deliver more social and economic initiatives to facilitate growth and improve the welfare of the Nigerian communities, especially those in rural areas.

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Future Face Africa: Ecobank Leads As 18 Models Qualify for Grand Finale in Lagos

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Ecobank Nigeria says it is a proud partner of the Future Face Africa (FFA) model talent search as preparation reaches concluding phase to host the grand finale of the competition in Lagos, Nigeria. After a rigorous selection process involving physical castings in 8 African countries, as well as thousands of digital applications from all over the world, the Future Face Africa judges have selected 18 finalists who will be flown into Lagos, for a shot at turning their modelling aspirations into a reality.

The Grand Finale event will be taking place on Sunday, 30th January 2022 at Eko Hotel & Suites, where models will be competing for a chance to win a 2-year modelling contract with a top international modelling agency, as well as a $5,000 USD cash prize.

Commending the FFA project, Head Marketing and Corporate Communication, Ecobank Nigeria, Babajide Sipe said Ecobank has increasingly shown that it means well in its intent to promote Africa’s finest in lifestyle vis-a-viz giving talented young people the opportunity for global stardom and to become African Fashion Icons.

“Future Face Africa aligns with Ecobank’s commitment to providing a veritable platform for actualizing the dreams of many young talents who will participate in the competition by gracing the international stage and ultimately interested in the fashion and beauty industry”.

Future Face Africa, no doubt Africa’s largest model search competition is headed by Elizabeth Isiorho, a pioneer in the African modelling industry and the founder of Beth Model Management Africa, Africa’s largest modelling agency, and the organisation behind Future Face Africa. Over the past 17 years, Beth Model Management has served as an industry pacesetter, helping to launch the careers of dozens of internationally placed models, and has cultivated some of the best talents in the industry, such as Mayowa Nicholas and Davidson Obennebo.

Elizabeth Isiorho previously organised Elite Model Look Nigeria, but after a 2-year hiatus, re-emerged with Future Face Africa to expand her model search beyond the borders of Nigeria alone, and offer a wider range of hopefuls a chance at success.

FFA will be giving opportunities to people from various countries, backgrounds and skin tones, aiming to go beyond the buzzwords of “diversity” and “inclusivity” to create an initiative that truly celebrates the range of beauty that the industry has to offer.

FFA will be equipping selected models with the knowledge and skills to achieve international success and to have long-lasting careers in a very competitive industry. For these models, Future Face Africa will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that could change their lives forever.

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Nestlé Wins 2022 Top Employer Award, Promises More Safety, Wellbeing Practices

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The 2022 Top Employers have been announced and Nestlé has been recognised as a Top Employer in Nigeria.

Being certified as a Top Employer showcases an organisation’s dedication to a better world of work, exhibited through excellent HR policies and people practices.

Mr. Wassim Elhusseini, MD/CEO of Nestlé Nigeria PLC says, “We are pleased with the recognition as a Top Employer 2022 and will continue to focus on the wellbeing and safety of our people who are indeed our greatest assets.”

The Top Employers Institute programme certifies organisations based on the participation and results of their HR Best Practices Survey. The survey covers six HR domains consisting of 20 topics including People Strategy, Work Environment, Talent Acquisition, Learning, Well-being, Diversity & Inclusion and more.

David Plink, CEO, Top Employers Institute says: “Reflecting on the demanding year that has, like the year before it, impacted organisations across the world, Nestlé Nigeria has continued to show that it prioritises maintaining excellent people practices in the workplace. The company continues to meet the challenges of the changing world of work while working tirelessly to make a positive impact on the lives of their workforce.

We are pleased to celebrate and applaud the organisations that have been certified as Top Employers in their respective countries this year.”

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