UN and FIFA Share Strategic Social Goals
The United Nations Deputy Secretary-General Ms. Amina J. Mohammed had a virtual meeting with FIFA President Gianni Infantino in which they exchanged views on shared priorities and the importance of urgent actions and commitments to implement Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.
They discussed the role of football as a force for good and a tool for hope, particularly as the world recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. A number of opportunities for engagement and collaborations were highlighted in the lead-up to the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, at the World Cup and beyond.
“The United Nations welcomes the collaboration with FIFA, particularly football’s potential in supporting the SDGs,” Ms. Mohammed said. “Our engagement is important to best identify how we can advance the Sustainable Development Goals not only at the global level but also at the regional and local level to ensure no one is left behind”.
The FIFA President agreed, adding that it was important for football to be at the service of society. “It is important for us at the new FIFA to be able to engage with the UN. The new FIFA is a responsible body and a sustainable organisation. It is an organisation that is aware that football goes beyond playing competitions. Football is much more than that”.
The call, which took place on 8 March, International Women’s Day was an opportunity to reflect on the role of the sport in advancing gender equality and building better mechanisms to protect from abuse and marginalisation.
Both leaders agreed that while having a vaccine was an important step in the effort to end the pandemic, the vaccine needed to be a people’s vaccine with equitable availability around the world. Ms. Mohammed highlighted the Secretary-General’s call for reimagining multilateralism and the need for working with new and untraditional actors around the world to promote the Global Goals and the United Nations Agenda.
The FIFA President spoke about the need to build on positive examples around the world when communities and countries came together, how football can support the recovery process, and also the role that football can have in education.
“The common language of football works everywhere, and it is in the DNA of the new FIFA to be open and we will use our competitions to get the message across,” the FIFA President said. “Through the Football for Schools programme and via a new African schools tournament programme, our focus is not only on football. FIFA strongly believes that through football, you can speak about everything, as it teaches children about values and rules, and we want to use football’s force for education”.
The two leaders concluded by agreeing to strengthen existing relationships and to develop further plans in relation to the SDGs.
Npower News: Beneficiaries Ask EFCC to Probe Minister
Batch A & B of Npower beneficiaries have called on the anti-graft agencies to probe the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajia Sadiya Umar Faruk.
The concerned beneficiaries stated that the minister needed to be accountable for the unpaid five months allowances of more than 14,000 N-Power members.
According to the petition signed by Comrade Bashir Usman Gobirp, the National Chairman of Association of Exited N-Power Beneficiaries of Nigeria, the minister was alleged to have mismanaged billions of Naira belonging to the affected beneficiaries.
Investors King understands that this is not the first time Npower beneficiaries will call for the probe of the minister. Last year, some Npower beneficiaries called for the sacking of the Minister after a popular musician, D’banj was accused to be involved in the diversion of billions of Naira meant for Npower beneficiaries.
Reading from a prepared speech on behalf of the group, Comrade Bashir Usman Gobirp listed the Unpaid five months’ arrears of allowances for 14,000 beneficiaries of batches A and B and Non-payment of exit package for the exited 500,000 beneficiaries for both batches as part of the allegations against the minister.
The group, therefore urged both the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Crimes (ICPC) to commence a holistic investigation into the matter which has caused hardship and even death to some members.
“I therefore, in line with your statutory mandate, urge the Commission to take appropriate legal measures against any person who may be found wanting in the mismanagement of the N-Power funds, which has caused 500,000 persons untold hardships, deprivations and even deaths,” the petition read.
It would be recalled that the Npower scheme was created in 2016 as part of the social intervention programmes of the Federal government to engage and train youth on economic skills. Beneficiaries are paid a stipend of 30,000 for the duration of their training or service. However, ever since the establishment of the scheme, issues of unpaid allowances have always characterized the programme, sometimes leading to protests.
IATA Urges Quick Intervention as Foreign Airlines Trapped Funds Rises to $743m
The International Air Transport Association, IATA has decried the continuous and drastic increase in the trapped funds of international airlines operating in Nigeria.
Investors King reports that in January 2023, the data had grown to $743,721,097 which is a 12.4 percent increment from the $662 million recorded in the corresponding period last year.
This was contained in a letter signed by the Area Manager of West and Central Africa, Dr. Samson Fatokun, on Tuesday which was addressed to the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika.
In the letter, the association appealed to the Minister to urgently intervene and resolve the recurring matter of airlines’ blocked funds in the country.
Dr. Fatokun lamented that Nigeria has been marked as the country with the highest airline-blocked funds in the world amongst other countries for more than a year now.
According to him, foreign airlines trapped funds in the nation were $662m and $549m in January 2022 and December 2022 respectively but suddenly rose to $743m.
Enumerating the effects of the situation on the nation’s economy, Fatokun noted that foreign direct investment will be affected due to the massive backlog of funds.
He explained that the overlapping trapped funds contradict the Bilateral Air Service Agreement which should be looked into.
On arresting the unpleasant situation, Fatokun disclosed that the airlines have taken some actions like cutting down the number of seats put out for sale in the market in order to reduce the number of passengers and cargoes’ access to the country.
“Going by the law of demand and supply, the reduction of airline inventories in the Nigerian market will lead to the ticket fare increase, which will further burden average Nigerians,” he said.
However, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika held a meeting with the IATA team, foreign airlines and travel agents on Tuesday to address the matter.
He promised the international airlines of prompt action as the issue will be tabled before the presidency and the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN for a solution.
Losses Incurred by Americans to Various Online Scams in 2022, Estimated at $10.3 Billion
The most reported scams were phishing expeditions and large-scale spam operations aimed at getting unsuspecting individuals’ passwords to their online banking apps, PayPal accounts, and the likes.
A report issued by the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) revealed that losses incurred by Americans to various online scams stood at an estimated $10.3 billion in 2022.
This represents an increase of $4.4bn increase when compared to the $5.9 billion reported in 2021.
According to the internet crimes 2022 report, IC3 received an average of 2,175 complaints daily and 651,800 plus average daily complaints from 2016 to 2021. Reports disclosed that the IC3 has recorded more than 7.3 million complaints since its inception in 2000.
The most reported scams were phishing expeditions and large-scale spam operations aimed at getting unsuspecting individuals’ passwords to their online banking apps, PayPal accounts, and the like.
This accounted for 300,497 victims’ complaints that resulted in over $52 million in losses while data breaches and non-payment scams were the next most common interest scale in 2022, responsible for 58,859 and 51,679 complaints, respectively.
Call center scams, which were reported to primarily emanate from India, saw over $1 billion lost by victims. Call Centers mainly targeted the elderly, almost half of the victims report to be over 60 (46%) and experience 69% of the losses of over $724 million.
Also, Ransomware, a type of malicious software designed to block access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid, saw several Americans impacted, which the FBI disclosed to have received 2,385 complaints with incurred losses of more than $34.3 million.
The FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) disclosed that it has seen an increase in an additional extortion tactic used to facilitate ransomware. The threat actors pressure victims to pay by threatening to publish the stolen data if they do not pay the ransom.
By far, the most heavily targeted industry by ransomware attacks was the healthcare industry, followed by critical manufacturing and government. The FBI, therefore, warned individuals to desist from paying a ransom to scammers, as paying them may embolden adversaries to target additional organizations, and encourage other criminal actors to engage in the distribution of ransomware.
Talking about states in the U.S., California recorded the highest number of individuals who fell prey to internet scams. Next was Florida where 42,792 people lost more than a million, and Texas which comes third on the list where over 38,000 people lost $763 million. Arizona recorded the least amount of people who lost money to online scams with only $241 million recorded.
In the 2022 online scams report, victims under the age of 20 collectively lost $210 million, while the most money lost by victims over the age of 60 was $3.1 million. Reports disclosed that the FBI had a 73% success rate in retrieving stolen funds back to victims, Investors King understands.
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