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AfDB President, Akinwumi Adesina Won African Man of the Year Award

African Development Bank President Dr Akinwumi Adesina has been named 2022 Man of the Year (Africa). 

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Akinwunmi Adesina - Investors King

African Development Bank President Dr Akinwumi Adesina has been named 2022 Man of the Year (Africa). 

Several encomiums poured in as African Development Bank President Dr Akinwumi Adesina was named African 2022 Man of the Year. The award which was organised by EMY Africa Magazine recognised outstanding African men for their visionary leadership.

Dr Akinwumi Adesina was recognised for his visionary leadership as the president of the African Development Bank Group. He was also recognised for his outstanding contribution to Africa during his period as agriculture minister in Nigeria.

The award ceremony which was hosted in Accra, Ghana witnessed the presence of important personalities in Ghana and beyond. 

Presenting the award, the UN Resident Coordinator in Ghana, Charles Abani stated that Akinwumi Adesina has exemplified himself with his contribution to people, the African agricultural value chain and the African society at large. 

It will be recalled that Akinwumi Adesina was Nigeria’s Minister of Agriculture from 2011 to 2015. During his time as minister, he turned the agricultural sector around with several innovations. 

He also ended Nigeria’s age-long corruption in the fertiliser sector by developing and implementing an innovative electronic wallet system, which directly provided farmers with subsidized farm inputs at scale using their mobile phones. Within four years, the mobile wallet system reached more than 15 million farmers scattered across the nooks and crannies of Nigeria. 

As AfDB President, Adesina achieved the highest capital increase since the establishment of the bank in 1964. 

In 2019, all stakeholders from 80  member countries raised the general capital from $93 billion to a historic $208 billion. 

AfDB under Adesina’s leadership also played a major responsive role to the Covid-19 pandemic. The bank launched a landmark $3 billion Covid-19 Social Bond which was made available to African countries. The continental bank also issued a Crisis Response Facility of up to $10 billion.

Similarly, AfDB approved $1.5 billion Food Facility to tackle the global food crisis sparked by the Russian-Ukraine conflict. 

The funds will help 20 million African farmers to produce an extra 38 million metric tons of food to address the growing fears of starvation and food insecurity on the continent.

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Travel

Emirates Halts Check-Ins Amid Severe Weather Disruption

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Emirates Airline

Emirates, the largest international airline, has taken the unprecedented step of halting all passenger check-ins for the day.

The move comes as the emirate grapples with severe weather disturbances, including heavy rainfall and storms, leading to widespread travel chaos in one of the world’s busiest aviation hubs.

The airline announced that check-ins for all passengers would be suspended from 8 am local time until midnight, as the adverse weather conditions continue to wreak havoc on travel plans.

Despite the disruption, Emirates assured that transit passengers would still be allowed to proceed to their connecting flights.

Dubai, known for its modern infrastructure and bustling aviation industry, has been brought to a standstill by the relentless rainfall and storms.

The inclement weather has resulted in delayed or diverted flights, leaving travelers stranded and adding to the existing challenges posed by the ongoing global pandemic.

Emirates has pledged to exert all efforts to restore its scheduled operations and provide support to affected customers amidst the chaos.

However, the extent of the disruption caused by the adverse weather conditions underscores the resilience and adaptability required to navigate unforeseen challenges in the aviation sector.

As the situation unfolds, authorities and airline personnel are working tirelessly to mitigate the impact of the severe weather on travel operations and ensure the safety and well-being of passengers.

Despite the temporary setback, Emirates remains committed to maintaining the highest standards of service excellence and operational efficiency, even in the face of unprecedented challenges posed by Mother Nature.

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EFCC Recovers N32 Billion from Humanitarian Ministry Probe

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EFCC

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has announced the recovery of a sum of N32 billion from its probe into the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.

This development comes amidst allegations of financial misappropriation and fraud involving high-ranking officials within the ministry.

The EFCC’s investigation, which initially focused on the suspended Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Betta Edu, has expanded to encompass a broader examination of financial transactions and practices within the ministry.

The probe was initiated following allegations of the unauthorized approval of N650 million payment into a private account linked to Edu.

President Bola Tinubu’s directive to investigate the allegations and the subsequent suspension of Edu from office underscore the seriousness of the matter. While Edu has denied any wrongdoing, the EFCC proceeded with its inquiry, leading to her detention and subsequent release on bail.

The agency’s investigation also extends to Edu’s predecessor, Sadiya Umar-Farouk, and the National Coordinator of the National Social Investment Programme (NSIPA), Halima Shehu.

Allegations of financial impropriety totaling N37.1 billion and the movement of N44 billion from NSIPA accounts to suspicious private and corporate accounts have prompted scrutiny of their roles in the ministry.

In a statement released over the weekend, the EFCC disclosed that its investigations into the alleged fraud have yielded significant results, with the recovery of N32 billion and $445,000 thus far.

This substantial sum reflects the scale of financial irregularities uncovered during the course of the probe.

The EFCC emphasized that its investigation is not limited to individual officials but extends to a systemic examination of fraudulent practices within the ministry.

The agency highlighted the involvement of banks in facilitating the alleged fraud, with managing directors providing valuable information to investigators.

Dele Oyewale, the spokesperson for the EFCC, reiterated the agency’s commitment to thorough investigations and prosecution of individuals found culpable.

He emphasized that no one implicated in the fraud has been cleared, and investigations are ongoing to uncover the full extent of the wrongdoing.

Beyond its efforts to combat corruption within government institutions, the EFCC is also intensifying its campaign against the abuse of the national currency and the dollarization of the economy.

The agency acknowledged the public’s support and involvement in reporting instances of currency abuse, signaling a growing awareness of the importance of preserving the integrity of Nigeria’s financial system.

As the EFCC continues its probe into the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, the recovery of N32 billion underscores the magnitude of financial misconduct within the government.

With investigations ongoing and prosecutions imminent, the EFCC remains steadfast in its mission to uphold transparency and accountability in Nigeria’s public sector.

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Sport Business

Eni Aluko Breaks Barriers: First Black Female Football Club Owner in Italy

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Eni Aluko

Eni Aluko, former sports director for Aston Villa and Angel City, has shattered the glass ceiling by becoming the first black female football club owner in Italy.

Aluko’s journey from the pitch to the boardroom marks a monumental shift in the traditionally male-dominated realm of football ownership.

Aluko’s foray into ownership comes through her involvement with the Mercury 13 group, a consortium dedicated to revolutionizing women’s football.

This $100 million investment group, named after the 13 female pilots who passed the same rigorous testing as NASA’s original Mercury 7 astronauts, aims to elevate the status of women’s football teams across Latin America and Europe.

Their recent acquisition of a majority stake in FC Como Women, situated in northern Italy, underscores their commitment to this vision.

For Aluko, this milestone isn’t just about personal achievement; it’s about paving the way for future generations of black sports investors and female football enthusiasts.

“Representation matters,” Aluko emphasized in a recent interview. “As the first, I understand the significance of this moment. But more importantly, I see it as an opportunity to inspire others and to promote diversity and inclusivity in the beautiful game.”

Aluko’s transition from player to owner is a testament to her unwavering dedication to football.

Having retired from professional play, she has seamlessly transitioned into roles in sports broadcasting and now ownership, leveraging her extensive experience and expertise to drive meaningful change within the industry.

The significance of Aluko’s ownership stake extends far beyond the confines of FC Como Women. It serves as a beacon of hope and inspiration for marginalized communities within football, signaling that barriers can be broken and dreams can be realized regardless of race or gender.

The Mercury 13 group’s investment in FC Como Women is poised to catalyze a new era for the club and women’s football in Italy as a whole.

With Aluko at the helm, there is an undeniable sense of optimism and momentum surrounding the future of the team and the broader movement for equality within the sport.

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