The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), on Monday disclosed that it recovered the aggregate sums of N152.1 billion, $386.2 million, £1.2 million, €156,246, 1.7 million Saudi Riyal, 1,900 South African Rand, and 1,400 Canadian Dollars between January and December 2021.
Reviewing its operational activities for last year, EFCC in a statement gave the total of the figures recovered from various persons, within the year to be:
1,723,310.00 Saudi Riyal,
1,900.00 South African Rand,
and 1,400.00 Canadian Dollar.
The recovery basket, according to the antigraft agency also included a digital currency component with 5,36957319 Bitcoin and 0.09012 Ethereum.
Topping the recoveries was the EFCC Abuja Headquarters with a total of N67, 249, 744, 994.89, $375,662,223.59 and £1,151,539.75.
Following the HQ was the Lagos Command which led the Naira recoveries with N70, 315,611,260.52, $9,286,497.83 and £21,500.00.
EFCC stated that its Kaduna Zonal Command emerged third in terms of Naira recoveries with a total of N3,339,405,723.93.
The Ibadan Zonal Command, however, took the same third position in terms of Dollar recoveries to the tune of $387,385.00.
The Executive Chairman of the Commission, Abdulrasheed Bawa, in his statement explained that the monies recovered include direct and indirect recoveries for the different tiers of government (Federal, State and Local Governments), corporate organizations and individuals (victims of crime) within the year (2021) under review.
The commission in 2021 secured its highest number of convictions since its inception.
Before last year, the highest record of convictions by the EFCC was secured in 2019 with 1,280 convictions. However, 2021’s figures were 127.5 percent higher than the 2019 record.
The 2021 record represented a 98.49 percent success rate in prosecution as the antigraft agency only lost 34 cases during the year under review.
In his remarks, Bawa hailed the commission’s personnel for the performance, urging them to redouble their efforts to ensure that perpetrators of economic and financial crimes are denied the benefit of the proceeds of their crimes.
CBN Berates Illegal Lenders Patronage, Says Microfinance Banks’ Loans Easy, Affordable
The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN has urged Nigerians to avoid patronising illegal money lenders while drawing their attention to the great risk ahead of such transactions.
The CBN called on the citizenry to take advantage of the various schemes available to them to increase their finances through microfinance banks.
The Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele gave the charge at the end of the monetary policy committee meeting in Abuja on Tuesday.
Describing the activities of illegal lenders known as loan sharks, he said they operate outside the law, giving loans at extremely high interest rates and intense terms and conditions set in if there is a shift in the deadline.
Frowning at illegal money lenders’ patronage, he said, “there is no need for you to go to loan sharks for a loan. People normally go to loan sharks because they are desperate and can’t access the bank.”
He stressed that those who take loans from platforms outside microfinance banks or recognised institutions are at great risk since they are not regulated.
The apex bank governor noted that the central bank has made available business growth schemes through microfinance banks like the target credit facility, the SMEs loans to assist the masses.
“We found out that those that are vulnerable are households who need money to do their businesses but they can’t access bank finance and as a result go to loan sharks who charge them way above or two times higher than the amount borrowed and expected to pay back in 90 days and if that doesn’t happen, they seize your house or bikes.
“We can only continue to advise that there is no need to go for loan sharks. The central bank has put in place the avenue through which you can raise your finance, like through the target credit facility or the SMEs loan that was set up through our microfinance banks.
“You don’t have to owe anybody, just go to the portal and fill the form, send your data, and if it’s correct, you will be able to access loans,” he said.
Commending the beneficiaries of the CBN support schemes, he stated that many people have enjoyed the services of microfinance banks, getting affordable return rates and they don’t have to owe anybody.
He, however, said that in its efforts to put an end to loan sharks’ services, CBN will go after illegal money lenders and they will be dealt with mercilessly.
Cadbury Nigeria Posts 191 Percent Increase in Profit Before Tax in 2021
Cadbury Nigeria, a food, sweets and drink company headquartered in Lagos, Nigeria, grew revenue by 20 percent in the year ended December 31, 2020.
In the company’s unaudited financial statement released on Wednesday, gross profit increased by 10 percent to N6.507 billion from N5.899 billion it closed in the same period of 2020.
The company grew results from operating activities to N578.906 million, representing a 105 percent jump from N281.824 million filed in the corresponding period.
Profit before tax also rose 191 percent to N1.186 billion from N408.065 million in the 2020 financial year.
However, the company’s income tax dragged on the firm’s profit after tax as Cadbury paid N355.920 million in tax compared to N523.762 million tax credit received in the same period of 2020.
Profit after tax dipped to N830.481 million in the period under review, 11 percent below N931.827 million recorded in 2020. Basic earnings per share also declined by 11 percent 44.22 kobo.
Cadbury history in Nigeria dates back to the 1950s when it began sourcing for cocoa and also importing bulk products and repacking it into tins for sale in the country. Later finding increasing market opportunities in the country, the group set up a manufacturing facility in January 1965.
The firm became a publicly quoted company in 1976 when Cadbury sold 20% of its interest in the firm. The firm’s investment in the integration of its supply chain led to the establishment of a sorghum conversion plant and Stanmark Industries in Ondo, a cocoa processing plant. Stanmark provides raw materials for its key product, Bournvita and is a source of foreign currency through exportation of cocoa products. In 2006, the subsidiary processed 15,000 tonnes of cocoa beans into cocoa butter, cocoa liquor and cocoa powder.
In 2006, the firm released a statement disclosing financial misstatements in a number of previous annual reports. Immediately after the disclosure, the CEO and finance director resigned their positions. The firm later announced it will be taking exceptional item charges on its balance sheet as a result of the misstatements.
Is the IMF Scared About the Future of Finance?
The IMF’s demands to El Salvador on Bitcoin show the institution to be on the wrong side of history and is bullish for cryptocurrencies, says the CEO of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory, asset management and fintech organizations.
The damning observation by deVere Group’s Nigel Green, a game-changing crypto advocate, follow the International Monetary Fund urging the central American nation to reverse its decision to make Bitcoin legal tender.
In September, El Salvador became the first country to allow consumers to use the cryptocurrency in all transactions, alongside the U.S. dollar.
Mr Green says: “Of course, the situation in El Salvador needs to be monitored extremely carefully and every precaution must be taken to ensure the Bitcoin rollout truly benefits the population.
“But the IMF asking a pioneering sovereign nation to drop a future-focused financial policy that attempts to bring it out of financial instability and a reliance on another country’s currency shows the institution to be on the wrong side of history.
“Bitcoin is the world’s largest digital currency –- and digital is the inevitable future of money.
“This is why more and more institutional investors, household name investors, Wall Street giants and multinational corporations are all sensibly, increasing their exposure to crypto and bringing with them capital, reputational clout and expertise.
“They understand and value the key characteristics of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies are designed for this century and, therefore, are growing in appeal.
“These include that they’re borderless, making them perfectly suited to a globalised world of commerce, trade, and people; that they are digital, making them an ideal match to the increasing digitalisation of our world; and that demographics are on the side of cryptocurrencies as younger people are more likely to embrace them than older generations.
“For the IMF not to recognise this is baffling.”
He continues: “Is the IMF scared of the future of finance? Why do they continue to want to pile on debts to poorer countries that they know are unlikely to be able to repay using traditional currencies? Is the IMF worried about the domino effect of nation-state adoption that might weaken their dominant global influence? If so, is this a warning shot to those countries?”
When El Salvador adopted Bitcoin as legal tender in September, Nigel predicted that three other countries would follow suit, perhaps as early as this year.
He said: “Low-income countries have long suffered because their currencies are weak and extremely vulnerable to market changes and that triggers rampant inflation.
“This is why most developing countries become reliant upon major ‘first-world’ currencies, such as the U.S. dollar, to complete transactions.
“However, reliance on another country’s currency also comes with its own set of, often very costly, problems. A stronger U.S. dollar, for example, will weigh on emerging-market economic prospects, since developing countries have taken on so much dollar-denominated debt in the past decades.”
The deVere boss went on to add: “By adopting cryptocurrency as legal tender these countries then immediately have a currency that isn’t influenced by market conditions within their own economy, nor directly from just one other country’s economy.
“Bitcoin operates on a global scale and therefore is impacted by wider, global economic changes.”
In addition, he noted, cryptocurrencies could also help “bolster financial inclusion for individuals and businesses” in developing countries as they “can circumnavigate the biases” of traditional banks and other financial services providers.
In regard to El Salvador’s response, a meme posted on Twitter by the president, Nayib Bukele, suggests his government is to reject the IMF’s calls.
Nigel Green concludes: “Institutions should be working with developing economies to find their way out of debt and financial instability in ways that are future-focused.
“Past methods, clearly, haven’t been as successful as they should have been.
“Therefore, it’s time to look ahead, not back.”
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