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FG Owes Retirees N143bn, says PenCom



The Director General of the National Pension Commission (PenCom), Ms
  • FG Owes Retirees N143bn, says PenCom

The National Pension Commission on Thursday said that the Federal Government owed a total of N142.6bn in pension liabilities to retired workers from 2014 to 2016.

The Director-General, PenCom, Mrs. Chinelo Anohu-Amazu, disclosed this in a memorandum submitted to the Senate Committee on Establishments and Public Service at the 2017 budget defence session.

A copy of the memorandum was made available to our correspondents.

The DG expressed worry over the inability of the government to adequately fund the Retirement Benefits Bond Redemption Fund Account, adding that the development had left huge liabilities in the payment of pensions to retirees.

For instance, she said in 2014, the commission requested for a provision of N93.06bn based on the 11,010 verified and enrolled Federal Government employees scheduled to retire that year as well as estimates for deceased employees.

However, she noted that only N30.58bn was approved, thus resulting in a shortfall of N62.48bn in the 2014 fiscal period.

Anohu-Amazu informed the committee that the monthly mandates of N2.54bn for four months (September to December 2014), amounting to N10.19bn, were not cash-backed and released into the RBBRF account by the Office of the Accountant-General of the Federation after the Budget Office of the Federation had issued the “approval-to incur-expenditure” for that purpose.

In the 2015 fiscal period, the PenCom DG said the commission had, based on the data obtained on the Federal Government employees retiring that year and the death benefits claims as of September 2015, determined the government’s pension liability of N98.7bn for 13,799 retirees and estimates for deceased employees.

However, she lamented that only N60.25bn was appropriated in the 2015 budget for the purpose, thus resulting in another shortfall of N38.45bn for the retirees and deceased employees.

For the 2016 fiscal year, she said the commission requested for the provision of N91.91bn in the Appropriation Act based on 16,267 verified and enrolled government employees scheduled to retire within the year as well as estimates for deceased employees.

However, she stated that N50.19bn was presented before the National Assembly by the Budget Office, thereby resulting in a shortfall of N41.71bn.

She lamented that out of the approved N50.19bn, only N18.82bn, which was the mandate for four and half months, was released into the RBBRF account.

This, according to her, implies that mandates for seven and half months in the sum of N31.37bn were not cash-backed by the Accountant General of the Federation.

Anohu-Amazu said, “The distinguished Senate Committee on Establishment and Public Service is further requested to consider and ensure the appropriation of adequate funds to facilitate the payment of the sum of N10,194,184,608 to pay all outstanding accrued benefits for deceased and mandatory retirees of the Federal Government for the period September to December 2014.

“The sum of N41,719,090,082, being the shortfall in the 2016 budget appropriation. The sum of N31,372,380,576, being the outstanding mandates for seven and half months in 2016 in order to effect payment of outstanding accrued benefits for deceased and mandatory retirees of the Federal Government.

“The appropriation of the total sum of N113,023,255,000 in the 2017 Appropriation Act in favour of the Retirement Benefits Bond Redemption Fund Account being the accrued benefits due to 16,267 retirees/prospective retirees and estimates for deceased employees for the year 2017.”

The PenCom DG stated that there was a need to ensure adequate appropriation under the Federal Government’s recurrent expenditure this year so as to facilitate the implementation of the 18 per cent rate of pension contributions.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial market.

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FBN Holdings Boost First Bank CAR With N25 Billion Capital Injection



FBN Holdings

First Bank Boosts CAR With N25 Billion Capital Injection

FBN Holdings Plc announced it has boosted the Capital Adequacy Ratio (CAR) of its commercial banking subsidiary, First Bank of Nigeria Limited by N25 billion.

According to the statement released by the bank on the Nigerian Stock Exchange website, the capital injection represents part of the net proceeds of the company’s divestment from FBN Insurance Limited.

It noted that the capital injection upped the bank’s Capital Adequacy Ratio to 16.53 percent –before capitalising year to date profit– as at June 2020.

Oyewale Ariyibi, the Chief Financial Officer of the Company, was quoted as saying “the divestment is in line with the Group’s medium to long term strategic objectives. The divestment has unlocked significant value embedded in the former subsidiary which is being leveraged to strengthen the core banking business for which the Group is renowned“.

Ariyibi further stated that the Company’s objective is to increase capital across the Group in order to drive business growth, enhance efficiency and improve overall shareholders’ value.

Uk Eke, the Group Managing Director, who commented on the company’s performance for the first half of 2020 said “The H1 2020 financial results are impressive and reconfirm our consistent focus on enhanced shareholder value. Despite the difficult operating environment, the results demonstrate our capacity to deliver exceptional services to our customers in these uncertain times. Looking ahead, we remain cautious, but confident that our business is fundamentally strong to surmount any future challenge towards delivering superior financial performance“.

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9mobile Joins MTN, Launches E-Sim Service 




9mobile Launches E-Sim Service

Nigeria’s mobile network operators have joined the rest of the world in launching E-Sim, an embedded sim.

In July, MTN Nigeria set the ball rolling with the launching of its E-Sim trial. This was followed by 9mobile that launched its E-Sim earlier this month.

E-Sim is a form of an in-built sim that is embedded directly into a device without using a physical Sim.

Speaking on the new E-Sim, the Acting Director of Marketing, 9mobile, Layi Onafowokan, described the latest move as the most excellent experience that advanced technology provides.

According to him, the E-Sim is an in-built sim embedded in mobile devices in order to reduce the possibility of losing or damaging sim and eliminate the stress of dealing with the cutting of sim cards or finding adaptors.

It also enables multiple usage and adaptation of one subscriber profile across a broad range of mobile communication devices, internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) apps including smart commuting, metering, tracking, and surveillance, rather than the restricted single-device use of the conventional SIM card.

Onafowokan said: “Customers can walk into any of our select 9mobile Experience Centres to request E-Sim activation. A QR code will be provided to scan and download E-Sim profile and perform the usual SIM registration.

He added that customers that activate E-Sim service will enjoy up to 7GB data-free while those who want to change to E-Sim will only do a SIM swap at approved centres.

E-Sim is compatible with Google Device like Pixel 3, 3 XL, 4, and Pixel 4 XL. Apple Device like Iphone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, Xs, Xs Max and Iphone XR. Samsung S20 Series.

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Access Bank Enters Into Definitive Agreement With Cavmont Capital



herbert wigwe

Access Bank Signs Definitive Agreement With Cavmont Bank Ltd

Following July 8, 2020 announcement, the Board of Access Bank Plc on Thursday said its subsidiary, Access Bank Limited (Zambia) has entered into a definitive agreement with Cavmont Capital Holdings Zambia regarding the acquisition of Cavemont Bank Ltd.

In the statement released through the Nigerian Stock Exchange, the bank said the proposed acquisition will position Access Bank as one of the top 10 banks in Zambia and improve the bank’s momentum to advance its strategic objectives.

The bank said “This is a highly complementary transaction, combining ABZ’s wholesale and trade finance capabilities with Cavmonth Bank’s retail and commercial banking operations. Customers of the enlarged bank will benefit from greater security offered by what will be one of the most capitalised banks in Zambia with a more diversified product and service offering and a broader geographical footprint and infrastructure. The enlarged bank will be well-placed to participate in the long-term economic growth of Zambia, predicated on the country’s vast reserves of natural resources and fast-growing young population.

The transaction agreement showed Access Bank Zambia will acquire the entire issued share capital, assets and liabilities of Cavmonth Bank while Capricorn Group Limited, majority shareholder of Cavmonth Capital Holdings, will invest around $16.5 million or ZMW300 million of preference shares into Access Bank Zambia.

According to the bank, the transaction is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2020.

Speaking on the transaction, Herbert Wigwe, the Group Managing Director, Access Bank Plc, said “Access Bank is focused on building the scale needed to become a leading bank in its key operating markets through leveraging the right partnerships. This transaction underscores our approach and is another stepping stone towards delivering on our strategic aspirations of becoming the World’s Most Respected African Bank and Africa’s Gateway to the World. It will strengthen our presence in Zambia, while furthering our footprint for growth in the COMESA region, Africa’s largest free trade area.

“Over the years, we have worked hard to build a sustainable international bank of African origin that can expand the potential of businesses, support economic prosperity, facilitate trade and investment and extend the power of banking to millions of people who do not yet have the financial tools to achieve their dreams. This proposed transaction aligns with that strategy”.

Thinus Prinsloo, Managing Director of Capricorn Group, also said: “Access Bank is an African banking group with an impressive growth trajectory and geographic reach across Africa and internationally. This transaction is an excellent strategic fit with Cavmont Bank’s presence in Zambia and will strengthen the capital base from which to achieve long-term sustainable growth. Zambia is an economy with th potential that is poised for a robust recovery, and this combination best positions the combined bank to harness these opportunities“.

Peet van der Walt, the Managing Director of Cavmont Bank, explained that: “Cavmont Bank’s vision is to be a world-class bank, rated amongst the best in Zambia. This proposed merger with Access Bank Zambia accelerates our strategy and positions us as a top ten bank in the country. As a subsidiary of one of the largest banking groups in Africa, Access Bank Zambia has the scale, capabilities and ambition to enable the combined bank to pursue exciting strategic opportunities in Zambia.

“Our customers will benefit from greater security offered by one of the most capitalised banks in the country, increased scale in Zambia, access to a broader digital and retail offering, and a geographic network across the continent. We look forward to working closely with Access Bank to deliver the benefits of the merger to all the stakeholders.” Shareholders should note that the cautionary announcement dated July 8, 2020 is hereby withdrawn and shareholders are no longer required to exercise caution when dealing in the group’s shares in relation to the potential transaction.”

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