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First Bank partners Eventful to support SMEs in fashion industry - ITREALMS

ITREALMS : To provide access to market and provide opportunities for entrepreneurs in the Small Medium Scale Enterprise (SMEs) of the fa...

Monday, July 22, 2019

First Bank partners Eventful to support SMEs in fashion industry - ITREALMS

To provide access to market and provide opportunities for entrepreneurs in the Small Medium Scale Enterprise (SMEs) of the fashion industry, First Bank of Nigeria Limited partnered with Eventful Nigeria Limited on fashion souk, reports ITREALMS.

The platform, ITREALMS gathered creates an opportunity for players in the fashion industry to exhibit and sell their wares to the thousands of event participants.

Speaking at the event held in Lagos recently, the Group Head, Marketing and Corporate Communication, First Bank of Nigeria Limited, said the bank has over the years, since its founding, been very supportive of the entrepreneurial space and SMEs, adding that the role of the bank is that of an enabler.

“FirstBank has been involved in every sector of the economy since 1894, so if you think about that there is no sector we have not been involved in, in fact this particular fashion souk, we are the pioneer sponsor and we sponsored it right from when it started.”

Ani-Mumuney explained that the fashion industry over the years has grown incredibly and added that it has helped to grow other businesses.

According to her, “Just like Nigerian music, the fashion industry is still in its infancy. We have great talents and potential in the fashion industry. Let’s consider the developed fashion industry of Italy for instance and the entire value chain of fashion, it tells you that there is a lot to be done. We still need to have fashion zones in core Cities and States, so that within a particular zone, you could have the cutters, button hole creation and others.

“The great thing is that we have a market here, but beyond that is that we could easily become the fashion hub for Africa, especially its export across continents. The fashion industry is diverse and versatile with many roles carried-out by individuals with uniquely different skill-set. Some persons could focus on finishing; some could focus on sketching, garment making and other areas. Indeed, Nigeria are fashion freaks, with a large and diverse market.

Also at the event was Nollywood actor and producer Kunle Afolayan whom had his clothing line Ire Clothing, displayed. Afolayan, the Chief Executive Officer of Ire Clothing said he started the clothing line with just the Kunle Kembe, and presently, it has expanded to about five, six collections.

He also stated that what inspired Ire clothing is because of his love for arts and anything that deals with the Nigerian cultural heritage and helps to document culture, “so with Ire clothing, we use Africa fabrics, Anakara, Adire and others.”

Afoloyan explained that he has modified the old Yoruba Kembe style to something that is now pop culture so that the younger generation can also wear it, adding that there are T-shirts and Kunle’s Dansiki which is a bit smaller than the traditional Dansiki, and face caps.

According to him, “The brand story we are trying to tell is that we want people to embrace their own culture and tradition; use it to their advantage and use it to the world. I think the fashion industry is striving and it’s been here for a very longtime and it is doing better because a lot of our people are exporting our clothing abroad.”

In his remarks, veteran comedian, Atunyota Akpobome, popularly known as Ali baba, said the fashion souk is a platform of opportunities and a collage of business ideas, providing a platform for people to network and express business innovations.

According to Ali baba, “To expand the frontiers of the fashion industry, there is need for exposure and the social media is helping a great deal to improve the employment needs of Nigerians. Once the employment statistics increases there will be higher purchasing power and people will tend to invest and spend more in fashion. In a country of about 200 million people, one should be able to do one million sales in months. But I think we will get there someday. We need to grow our textile industry and revamp the textile companies, which implies that we have to revive the production of cotton so that players in the industry can have access to raw materials, thereby cutting down production cost.”

Also speaking at the event, popular television presenter and model, Uti Nwachukwu, expressed satisfaction with the event, commending the organisers for creating an avenue to convene fashion vendors under one roof to provide their wares at discounted and affordable rates, while giving customers the opportunities to patronize their brands.

He further stated that the fashion souk gives the vendors an opportunity to showcase what they have to sell and creates opportunity for them to advertise their products.

“A lot of vendors and customers here are happy. It is a give and take situation that works well. The fashion industry in Nigeria is the most underrated industry; there is so much potential, and greatness in the fashion industry.

“We have great designers that will shine in any part of the world. It is a great gesture the bank is making by supporting the industry. I just wish the bank can help these designers to get to international level of exposure. Our designs are wonderful, African prints are in fashion in different parts of the world. Finance and exposure are the key challenges facing the industry, if it is properly addressed, things will work out well,” Nwachukwu said.      

Chuks Egbune/Editor

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PIX: L – R: Mrs. Yewande Zaccheaus, Chief Executive Officer, Eventful Nigeria Limited and convener of the Fashion Souk; Her Excellency Mrs. Dolapo Osinbajo, Wife of the Vice President, Federal Republic of Nigeria and Lady Maiden Alex-Ibru, Publisher, The Guardian Newspapers at the Fashion Souk.

President Masisi survives helicopter crash - ITREALMS

ITREALMS:
The President of Botswana, Mr. Mokgweetsi Masisi, on Saturday survived a helicopter crash at Francistown airport, reports ITREALMS.

Confirming this to ITREALMS in a press statement, the office of the President and the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) informed that a BDF presidential helicopter carrying His Excellency the President was forced to make an immediate precautionary landing.

This, they said, took place while helicopter was taxiing at Francistown airport upon arrival from Mathangwane at 1730hrs today 20th July 2019.

While taxying for landing at Francistown Airport the pilots reported an engine fire indication were upon they promptly executed an engine shut down and landing on runway 13 at the airport.

The emergency response at Francistown Airport also responded to provide assistance with fire retardant foam.

"All five (5) passengers and the three (3) aircrew members are safe and without injuries," the press statement said.

Further, the BDF wished to assure the nation that all required maintenance and safety procedures are taken to assure the safe passage of His Excellency the President as well as any other principles in their care.

"The same care is taken for the safe operation of all BDF flights regardless of who is on-board," part of the statement read.

With regard to this incident, the Commander of BDF has ordered an investigation through a Board of Enquiry to determine the cause of the engine fire the actions of the aircrews and all other circumstances surrounding this incident.

Chuks Egbune/DoP

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Friday, July 19, 2019

Canadian Minister wishes everyone Happy Igbo Day in Regina - ITREALMS

As the Igbo community of Saskatchewan-Canada prepare to celebrate the 2019 Nigerian-Canadian heritage on August 3, Canada's Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Honourable Ralph Goodale has sent greetings to the Igbo Cultural Association of Saskatchewan (ICAS), ITREALMS.

Prime Minister Trudeau on behalf of the Government of Canada, Minister Goodale expressed pleasure to extend greetings to everyone who will be attending Igbo Day in Regina.

"As Canadians, we draw strength from our diversity. The growing Igbo community here in Regina, across the province and across Canada espouses that sentiment and plays an important part in our mosaic of cultures," Minister Goodale said.

The Minister recognizes ICAS' work in celebrating and increasing "awareness of the rich Igbo history around the world and here in Saskatchewan."

Minister Goodale wished everyone "a wonderful evening of excellent art, entertainment and cuisine."

President, Igbo Cultural Association of Saskatchewan, Dr. Chidi Igwe said that more information about ICAS and the 2019 Igbo Day of Arts and Culture, is available here.

Chuks Egbune/Editor

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Thursday, July 18, 2019

NDSF 2019: Participants demand Executive Order to boost IPv6 migration in Nigeria - ITREALMS

Arising from a one-day conference, participants at the 2019 Nigeria DigitalSENSE Forum on the Internet Governance for Development (IG4D) and Nigeria IPv6 Roundtable, have called on the President Muhammadu Buhari to initiate an Executive Order to fast-track migration of digital networks in Nigeria to IPv6, reports ITREALMS.

A communiqué from the forum organized by DigitalSENSE Africa Media, a certified ICANN At-Large Structure) in collaboration with the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), identified the proposed Executive Order as matter of urgency.

Participants in the communiqué under the chairmanship of former Institute of Software Practitiones of Nigeria (ISPON) Chief Chris Uwaje and endorsed by the Executive Director, Operations, DigitalSENSE Africa Media, Mrs. Nkem Nweke, noted that the Executive Order if done immediately with a timeline of 18 months will be a booster to the migration from IPv4 to IPv6.

“There should be an Executive Order for all Digital Networks in Nigeria to migrate from IPv4 to IPv6 within 18 months,” part of the communiqué read.

They also called for immediate revision of the National Information and Communications Technology (ICT) policies to pave the way for the establishment of the ‘National Digital Strategy’ for the country.

Government, participants urged, should ensure that all new IT equipment supplied to them are IPv6 compliant and Government should set a target date for MDAs to have IPv6 compliant networks, outside the national deadline.

“There should be IPv6 awareness and capacity building by organizing seminars and trainings, possibly incorporating IPv6 into university curriculum,” the communiqué also read.

By government playing actively in the growth and development of ICT in Nigeria will facilitate enabling environment for stakeholders, while on the other hand students, youth and women and indeed all good users of the internet were encouraged to make judicious use of the internet bearing in mind the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) existing in the European Union.

Additionally, participants demanded that government should make haste to sign into law the Digital rights and freedom bill which seeks for equal freedom of expression online.

Further they recalled that the 2019 one-day Nigeria DigitalSENSE Forum Series is the 10th edition on Internet Governance for Development (IG4D) which held on Thursday 20th June 2019, with the theme, “Connecting Nigerians for Enhanced Internet Governance” and Nigeria IPv6 Roundtable, in Commemoration of the World IPv6 Day with the theme “IPv6: An Ingredient For Enhance Internet” at the Welcome Centre Hotels, Muritala Muhammed International Airport Road, Lagos-Nigeria.

The 10th edition was supported by the NCC, Ministry of Communications, Internet Exchange Point of Nigeria (IXPN), Computer Professionals Registration Council of Nigeria (CPN), SystemSpecs Limited, African Regional Organisation (AFRALO), Medallion Communications Limited, Nigeria Internet Registration Association, Association of Licensed Telecom Operators of Nigeria (ALTON), Association Telecom Companies of Nigeria (ATCON), among others.

NDSF 2019 was endorsed by the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers and Nigeria IT Reporters Association, ATCON, ALTON, NIRA, to name a few.

*Editor

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'I'll turn around Oyo’s security architecture to boost FDI' - ITREALMS

ITREALMS:
Oyo State Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde, said on Wednesday that his government intends to quickly turn around the security architecture of Oyo State in order to open up the state for foreign investors, reports ITREALMS.

Governor Makinde, according to a statement made public by his Chief Press Secretary, Taiwo Adisa, said that he will relaunch the State’s Joint Task Force on Security, Operation Burst, commanded by Brigadier-General Oluyinka Soyele.

The Governor, who said these during a visit to the headquarters of the Operation Burst, maintained that he would relaunch the outfit within his first 100 days in office so as to guarantee investors of a peaceful and conducive environment.

He said: “Let me use to opportunity to appreciate the good work you have been doing in this state. For us in Oyo State, you have allowed our people to have confidence in your outfit. I asked people to give me complaints about the outfit but they were neither here nor there.

“This administration has four main pillars with Agric value chain as a key aspect to promote foreign investment. But we will be very limited in our drive if people come here and they do not have a conducive atmosphere to do their business.

“What is there for us to do is to redesign the security architecture to ensure adequate security for our people. Nobody will invest in an atmosphere of insecurity.

“The challenge of herdsmen and farmers, kidnapping, killings will basically make the environment more challenging.

“We appreciate the fact that if we want to achieve all the other pillars we have mentioned, the security needs to be taken seriously. We have a lot of work to do as regards security.”

Governor Makinde further said: “I am in a hurry to bring investors to Oyo State and I want them to see a new dawn and a new Oyo state.

“I am disposed to beefing up this outfit and ensuring that you have enough men to help you and you can always count on us that we will take your welfare seriously.”

Ayo Midele/Editor

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Coming soon: Reasons Entrepreneurs must Embrace Digital Marketing - ITREALMS

ITREALMS:
The digital world will on Saturday the 27th of July 2019, receive a boost with the launch and presentation of a new book “Reasons Entrepreneurs must embrace Digital Marketing.”

The Presentation is scheduled to take place at the Tiger Active Sports Centre, Sangotedo, Lekki, between 10.30 am and 3.30 pm.

Some notable individuals will be honoured for their support towards the production of the book and award of recognition will be presented to some individuals.

According to the Author March Oyinki, the digital world is here with us. The book will help digital migrants unfamiliar with today’s digital reality to function.

The new book will also help those in the academia, who sometimes find digital marketing incomprehensible because of the intricate nature of the subject, which is dynamic and tends to change quite rapidly, to catch up.

”That is true especially when you consider the array of digital marketing channels that one must contend with when developing a corporate digital marketing strategy” Oyinki said.

The Author says digital marketing still poses a challenge even for the millennial generation who are so Internet savvy, as many of them erroneously see digital marketing mainly as social media.

He said the 250-page book, should be a must read by all who want to benefit from the new, engaging digital world.

About the book

The book “Reasons Entrepreneurs Must Embrace Digital Marketing”, a thirty-chapter book scintillates with all the dynamics, trends and indeed, the ABC of digital marketing.

It is a hands-on guide to the subject, written specifically to provide guidance to start-ups and entrepreneurs who are finding new, innovative and effective ways to engage millions of Internet users surfing for products and services, with the intent to drive traffic to their websites and scale up businesses in quantum leaps.

The book reveals some of the intricacies of digital marketing that will help readers have clear understanding, expand and transform their digital experience in the emerging global digital world.

The book is rich in content, and covers many critical topics in digital marketing, which are useful to both entrepreneurs and students of media and communications.

Some of the areas covered include; website development and authoring, e-commerce, affiliate marketing; and social media, blogging, lead generation and product promotion.

It contains enormous resources on digital transformation and innovation, covering some of the latest digital marketing trends such as Artificial Intelligence, Cloud Computing, Internet of Things, 3D Printing, Drone delivery services and many others.

It will also expose the entrepreneur/readers to some of the new twist, tricks and tips on the topic; “how to explore digital marketing to expand your business.”

For the curious, tech freak as well as beginner, the author’s conversational style as well as its clear and simple language, makes for easy understanding, companionship and leisure reading.

About the Author

A prolific writer, blogger, communicator, social media campaigner, trainer and entrepreneur, Oyinki is the author of two earlier books – Digital Marketing Concepts and Applications as well as Digital Marketing Reference Guide.

He is also the CEO and founder of Admate Communications Limited, a digital marketing company and publishers of the Digital Merchant Series. He is in his elements in this new, concise book.

As former employee of Chevron Nigeria Limited and the Public Affairs section of the United States Embassy, where he had the opportunity to practice what he preaches, March has put his wealth of research and working experiences into this information-packed book.

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FirstBank promotes financial digital inclusion - ITREALMS

First Bank of Nigeria Limited has announced its organisation of a Joint Seminar with sub-Saharan African Banking and Telecom Regulators to promote financial inclusion through digital innovations in sub-Saharan Africa,  reports ITREALMS

The event which was held in Lagos recently was themed “Advancing ePayment and Digital Innovations in Africa- Evolution of Nigeria’s Payment Systems.”

The seminar was organised to provide key officers of regulatory authorities in these Markets – notably locations with FirstBank subsidiaries; Ghana, Senegal, DRC, Gambia, Sierra Leone and Guinea – a platform to get familiar with developments in the Nigerian Payment Systems and Digital Products Industry thereon replicating and adopting the learnings from the seminar with a view to bolster the finance industry in their respective countries.

Key players and regulators in the finance and digital banking ecosystem at the event included: Agada Apochi, Managing Director/CEO, Unified Payment Services Ltd; Mike Ogbalu, CEO, Verve International; Musa Jimoh, Deputy Director, Payments System Policy and Oversight, Central Bank of Nigeria; Premier Oiwoh, Managing Director, NIBSS; Bashirat Odunewu, Group Executive, International Banking Group, FirstBank and Adesola Adeduntan, CEO, First Bank of Nigeria Limited amongst others.

Speaking on FirstBank’s leading role in promoting digital banking and financial inclusion across the country, Adeduntan said, “FirstBank by any measure has been a success story as far as digital banking is concerned. Today, we have more than 8.5million people on our USSD *894# banking platform, more than 3 million people on our Firstmobile platform. We are the only Bank in Nigeria that has issued cards in excess of 10 million in Nigeria. When you are looking at that institution that has achieved a lot in terms of digital payment, it is FirstBank. More than 80% of our transactions are carried out on our digital channels.”

“We have been very aggressive with our FirstBank Agent Banking network. Today we have over 27000 agents spread across the nooks and crannies of the country, indeed second to none as far as Nigeria is country. At FirstBank, the economic growth and development of our host communities is important to us; assisting Nigeria and the continent at large address poverty is very imperative and that is why for us financial inclusion is a key part of our business strategy.” he submitted.

Nenye Dom/Editor

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Wednesday, July 17, 2019

U.S. universities offer $7.5m in Scholarships to Nigerian students - ITREALMS

Over 303 Nigerian students from the 17 states of southern Nigeria have received no less than $7.5 million in full or partial scholarships from 225 American universities and colleges to study in the United States for the 2019-2020 academic session.

Acting United States Consul General Osman Tat disclosed this in Lagos on Tuesday during the 2019 EducationUSA pre-departure orientation for students who have received offers of admission and scholarships to attend U.S. colleges and universities this fall.

Noting that the U.S. remains a top destination for international students, Acting Consul General Tat explained that the list of acceptances for Nigerian students for the upcoming academic year has been quite impressive, cutting across many of the 50 U.S. states.

“I congratulate each one of you on your tremendous success. This is a very important step in your life. I encourage you to make the most out of your time in the United States to acquire the requisite skills and knowledge needed to support Nigeria’s development,” Tat told the group of U.S.-bound students.

The students have been accepted for undergraduate and graduate degree programs at top notch U.S. institutions ranging from Ivy League universities, liberal arts colleges, women’s colleges, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), to community colleges.

They include Stanford University, The George Washington University, Johns Hopkins University, Purdue University, Tufts University, Boston University, Emory University, and Howard University, among many others.

The pre-departure orientation is intended to assist students to prepare for their move from Nigeria to attend a college or university in the United States. The event included interactive sessions on topics such as travel planning, adjusting to life in America, safety on campus, and F-1 visa rules for international students.

Participants also had the opportunity to meet with students currently studying in the United States who offered tips on how to prepare for the U.S. academic, social, and cultural environment.

Among the departing students are 13 EducationUSA Opportunity Fund grantees —10 undergraduate and 3 graduate students, with full scholarships — who received financial aid to cover the up-front cost of obtaining admission.

Annually, through the Opportunity Fund Program, the U.S. Consulate’s EducationUSA Advising Centre assists talented low-income students who are good candidates for admission to U.S. colleges and universities, by funding their application process.

According to the latest Open Doors Report, published annually by the Institute of International Education, Nigeria is the 13th highest sending country of international students to the U.S., with about 12, 693 Nigerians currently studying in the United States.

Uj. N. Dominic/Editor

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40 immigration officers, others graduate @UNILAG’s Chinese Institute - ITREALMS

ITREALMS:
Some 40 officers of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) were among the 552 students of the Confucius Institute of the University of Lagos (UNILAG) who were recently certified for proficiency in Chinese Language, in Lagos, repots ITREALMS.

The graduation which took place on Tuesday in Lagos, according to the News Agency of Nigeria reports, showed that the officers had undergone the course alongside 24 staff of the university and other members of the public.

NAN also reports that 24 out of the graduating students were awarded scholarship to further their studies in Chinese language.

The Controller of Immigration, Lagos Zone, Helen Onwuzulike, told NAN on the sidelines of the graduation ceremony that interactions between NIS and other countries had increased significantly, adding that this explained the need to learn major foreign languages.

Onwuzulike said: “We are having a lot of bilateral agreements with these countries and in a bid to further strengthen the ties, we decided to create an avenue whereby our men can learn other foreign languages.

“Right now, our officers are being sent on language courses as this has become imperative because of the current global trend in immigration. 

“This is aimed at enhancing our duties, especially with the influx of foreigners into our country.

“Currently, we are wooing a lot of foreigners to Nigeria for investment purposes and so it is part of our ease-of-doing-business arrangements such that when visitors come into the country, they feel welcomed.

“For instance, when you find an immigration officer at the arrival point at the airport speaking your language, the visitor automatically feels at ease, safe and welcomed.
So, it is part of what we are doing currently to train our officers.”

According to the NIS chief, the development is not only in the immigration regulation and duties, but rather to expose the officers to global trends and proficiency in foreign languages.
Onwuzulike added that many of the officers were currently undertaking proficiency courses in not only the Chinese language, but also German, French and Spanish languages as part of bilateral agreements.

“Having to train our officers for proficiency in various foreign languages will further increase the number of foreigners wanting to come in to invest, thereby improving our revenue base as a country because if I go to a country and feel welcomed, I will always want to come back. Again, it could also help us to track crime. 

“Being proficient in other languages goes a long way in being on the alert about any foreign aggressor or those with criminal intent,” she said.

Onwuzulike added that NIS had, in 2018, trained 40 of the officers, noting that this was going to be a continuous exercise.

The Deputy Vice Chancellor, Management Services, Prof. Folashade Ogunsola, said the university would continue to make its students globally competitive through its various programmes.

According to Ogunsola, the vision of the university is to ensure that students and other members of the public who participate in its programmes have an edge over others and become trail blazers in their respective fields of endeavour.
She further added that the proficiency language course would, among other benefits, take not just the students to the next level, but the country at large and as well as boost the country’s economy.

“Efforts are in place to ensure that our Confucius Institute remains a reference point among universities in the country and the public at large,” she said.

Ogunsola also said the occasion was to mark the 10th anniversary of the institute.

“It has remained opened to not just students of this university but the general public.

“There are indeed a lot of opportunities for persons to travel to China through these programmes and collaborations and so I must say we are truly happy with this development.”
The Chinese Director of the Confucius Institute, Yong Jng Wang, also told NAN that the scholarship awardees would depart for China in September.

Wang said: “I feel very happy with what is happening here today. 

“The winners of scholarship will be going to many different Chinese universities this September. 

“They will be representing this institute and the entire Nigeria.
“They will learn about the Chinese people, their culture and their language. 

“It is our hope that when they come back to Nigeria, they will also be able to use what they have learnt to contribute their quota to the development of this country.

“It is also our hope that the rate of enrollment into this institute will continue to grow with each passing year.

“We feel very happy to see and know that our culture and language are being accepted and embraced here.

“There is no gainsaying therefore that the bilateral relation between Nigeria and China is getting stronger and more fruitful.”

A don, Prof. Chimdi Maduagwu, explained that the duration of the scholarship was categorised into between six months and four years.

Maduagwu said: “The shortest period for the scholarship is six months. 

“Others will be going for four years, that is, for Bachelor of Arts and others for their Master degree, which will span between two and three years.”

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Child Online Safety to meet parents - ITREALMS

The Child Online Safety NG has advanced plans to host parents to a one day session on cybersecurity affairs, tagged ‘Lets Meet the Parents’ in Lagos, according to the convener, Mrs Olamide Odeneye, reports ITREALMS.

Disclosing this to 
ITREALMS in Lagos, Odeneyesaid that already lined up of confirmed speakers include Oluwakayode Olatunji from Digital Encode, Ali Afegbua, and Doyin Ijiwola, Team Lead, Integrated Orange Limited and Simbat Ozioma Sadiq and representative from TheClueNg.

She also confirmed that this event is free but registration is required.

Odeneye urged parents to comeand learn various ways relevant for th managemnt of child safety online.

“Come learn and share with other parents, educators and professionals necessary skills for parenting in the digital age,” she said.

The venue, she said, would be the Printivo.com office at 182 ikorodu Road, Moyosore house, Onipanu, Lagos by 9am.

She revealed there would be special presentation by 9ijakids at this event.

Further, she confirmed that Child Online Safety NG is partnering the likes of 
ITREALMS Online, Printivo.Com, 9ijaKids among others.

Uj. N. Dominic/Editor

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Jim Ovia tasks Emefiele to create enabling environment for youths - ITREALMS

The Chairman/Founder of Zenith Bank Plc, Mr. Jim Ovia (CON), has called on the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele (CON) to create the enabling environment through the institution of various initiatives that support financial inclusion to help empower and blossom the Nigerian youths, reports ITREALMS.

Jim Ovia made the call in his welcome remarks at a reception at the Civic Centre organized by the private sector in honour of the CBN Governor, following a family thanksgiving service held on Sunday, July 14, 2019 at the Catholic Church of Assumption, Falomo, Lagos.

According to Mr. Ovia, though the CBN, and the Federal Government have been working tirelessly to implement various strategic development programmes, what has been done so far, is not enough. In his opinion, there is a need to empower the youths to become the creators of jobs and employers of labor, as opposed to them only being job seekers.

He urged the CBN helmsman to fully encourage financial inclusion and initiate moreprogrammes that will create employment for the Nigerian youths, empowering them to be innovative and creative in utilizing their God-given talents in various industries including but not limited to agriculture, fintech, technology and the creative industries. He added that the implementation of these initiatives, which are in line with the World Bank and United Nations backed programmes all over the world, will significantly reduce poverty and unemployment in our country.

He also thanked the CBN Governor for the recent financing and funding initiatives which banks are mandated to fully support to empower the Nigerian youths.
ITREALMS recalls that Godwin Emefiele became the Governor of the CBN on June 2, 2014, mounting the saddle as the 11th CBN Chief and its 10thindigenous Governor. Following the successes of the policies and programmes which he introduced in his first term, he was in June, 2019 reappointed by President MuhammaduBuhari for a second term of five years, becoming the first CBN Chief to be reappointed for a second term since the country returned to civilian rule in 1999.

RemmyNweke/DoP
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Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Konga makes over 800% - ITREALMS

Konga, foremost composite E-Commerce giant, has creatively cut losses and grown its turnover by over 800 per cent, further fueling projections that it will turn profitable before 2022, reports ITREALMS.

This was disclosed by the Management of the company which recently concluded a major Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) rollout. Konga had visited three orphanages in Lagos and Abuja where it donated to the needy and less-privileged. The initiative, carried out under the auspices of Konga Kares –its social investment programme – is also set to hit other states in the country.

According to Co-CEO, Konga Group, Prince Nnamdi Ekeh, the company has put in so much work behind the scenes and is now ready to take the lead.

“We have spent the last year restructuring the business and positioning it on a very solid footing. This is evident from the huge strides we have recorded over the period and the several other viable business units and subsidiaries that have taken flight within the Konga Group. Indeed, we are preparing to lead in this space,” he ventured.

Prince Ekeh cites a lack of local know-how and huge losses as pitfalls that have encumbered businesses in the e-commerce sector – areas in which Konga stand out.

Moreover, he disclosed that the new Management of Konga has succeeded in reversing losses and growing the business to the delight of its new investors.

“We have reduced cost by over 45% and also achieved growth of over 800% in the past 18months. We are working very hard to meet investors’ expectations. It is true we are incurring huge losses now based on the e-commerce business model. However, we have 36months’ cash reserve to build Konga as a success.

“We are ambitiously scaling Konga and that is why we launched a successful Konga Travels and Tours that is currently making huge waves in the travel booking industry. In addition, we have other approved projects and new lines of businesses that are set to be unveiled soon.”

Konga currently operates over 16 physical stores and hubs in Lagos alone. Further, the company has more than tripled the number of strategic stores and mega warehouses nationwide in less than 18 months of the acquisition.

Continuing, Prince Ekeh affirmed that e-commerce is a complicated business requiring tact, world-class strategies and creative nous.

“E-commerce is not just an extremely expensive project anywhere in the world with initial huge losses. It is a very complicated business.

“At Konga, we are locals with a network of quality foreign service providers. We understand the implications of not positioning infrastructure first. This is why we spent the last 18 months indirectly building our own facility nationwide and restructuring technologies to accommodate our ambition. Nigeria will experience the full scale of the Konga retail revolution in the coming months,” he concluded.

Chuks Egbune/Editor

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GSR endorses new guidelines for digital transformation - ITREALMS

Regulators from around the world gathered in Port Vila, Vanuatu, from 9 to 12 July for the ITU Global Symposium for Regulators (GSR), reports ITREALMS.

They identified and endorsed a set of regulatory Best Practice Guidelines to fast forward digital connectivity and allow people everywhere to benefit from digital transformation and participate in today’s digital economy.

To unlock the full potential of digital technologies and accelerate progress towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Guidelines emphasize the need for a more actionable, collaborative, and innovative outcome-based approach to regulation. They urge regulators and all stakeholders to be open to new regulatory tools and solutions and act now.

“This week, Vanuatu was the centre of the ICT regulatory world. GSR-19 gave us a golden opportunity to discuss connectivity strategies with regulators from the entire Pacific region and the rest of the world,” said ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao. “As regulators everywhere are faced with new technologies and new business and investment models, the GSR-19 Best Practice Guidelines show how critical collaborative regulation is to achieving the SDGs and delivering on the promise of the digital economy, including for the 3.7 billion people who are still not using the Internet.”

“The regulatory landscape of digital markets is fast-moving and extremely complex. There is still much work to be done, and regulators across all sectors must rise to the challenge of connecting the other half of world’s population,” said Mr Brian Winji, Chairman of GSR-19 and Telecommunications, Radiocommunications and Broadcasting Regulator of the Republic of Vanuatu. “The GSR-19 Best Practice Guidelines we adopted are an invaluable tool that enables regulators to address the challenges ahead and navigate through rapidly evolving technologies, business models and market structures that are affecting economies, society and people around the world.”

The GSR-19 Best Practice Guidelines call for the adoption of three new and innovative approaches for achieving inclusive digital infrastructure and services.

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Makinde publicly declares assets, says its a promise kept - ITREALMS

ITREALMS:
In fulfillment of a campaign promise, the Oyo State Governor, Engineer Seyi Makinde has publicly declared his assets, reports ITREALMS.

The Governor, who visited the Oyo State office of the Code of Conduct Bureau (CCB) in Ibadan to receive a copy of the asset declaration form said that his decision to make the assets public was in fulfillment of a personal promise he made during the elections.

Details of the assets as contained in the CCB 1 with the name Oluseyi Abiodun Makinde, which was declared at the High Court of Oyo State, on May 28, 2019, indicated that the Governor is worth…

The assets declaration form, marked OYSE/2019/001 contained details of cash at hand, in the bank, landed properties (developed and undeveloped), household items, share and bonds owed by the Governor, his wife, Omini Makinde as well as his companies.

According to details of the asset form made public by the Chief Press Secretary to Makinde, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, the Governor of Oyo State had cash at hand and in the bank worth N234, 742,296.01, as at May 28, 2019.

In dollar terms, the Governor has cash valued at $30,056.99 as at the same date.

Properties, including the developed and undeveloped as well as household items indicated on the asset forms, showed that the Governor is worth N2, 624,800,500(two billion, six hundred and twenty-four million, eight hundred thousand, five hundred Naira as at the date of asset declaration.

In Dollar terms, the Governor also declared properties, developed and undeveloped as well as household items valued at $4,400,000(four million, four hundred thousand dollars only.

In South African Rands, the Governor declared buildings and household items worth four Million, four hundred and fifty-seven thousand, five hundred and fifty-four and four South African Rands.

The houses declared by the Governor include nine buildings in Nigeria, two in the United States of America and One in South Africa.

One of the properties in the United States is described as “jointly owned.”

The details showed the current value of Makinde’s companies stand at N48, 150,736,889 (forty-eight billion, one hundred and fifty million, seven hundred and thirty-six thousand, eight hundred and eighty-nine Naira), with 33, 730,000 units of shares as at May 28, 2019.

The Governor also has existing Bonds (Eurobond) worth $3, 793, 500 as well as shares, debentures and other securities valued at N120,500,000(One hundred and twenty million, five hundred thousand naira).

The companies listed by the Governor include Makon Engineering and Technical Services Limited; Energy Traders and Technical Services Limited; Makon Oil and Gas Limited; Makon Group Limited, Makon Construction Limited and Makon Power System Limited.

The asset declaration form indicated that Governor Makinde’s four companies have additional assets denominated as loan notes including Makon Engineering and Technical Services Limited(N1.7 billion); Makon Power System Limited(N148.4 million); Makon Oil and Gas Limited(N341 million); Energy Traders and Technical Services Limited(N1.159bn) totalling N3.389 billion.

Speaking with newsmen at the CCB office in Ibadan, Makinde said: "I came here to collect the photocopy of the form that I signed in fulfillment of the campaign promise to the people that I will declare my asset publicly and release the document to the public.
"I will encourage all the members of my cabinet to do the same thing but in as much they stay within the ambit of the law, I will encourage them to do the same.”

Ayo Midele/Editor

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Obasanjo’s open letter to Buhari - ITREALMS

I am constrained to write to you this open letter. I decided to make it an open letter because the issue is very weighty and must be greatly worrisome to all concerned Nigerians and that means all right-thinking Nigerians and those resident in Nigeria. Since the issue is of momentous concern to all well-meaning and all right-thinking Nigerians, it must be of great concern to you, and collective thinking and dialoguing is the best way of finding an appropriate and adequate solution to the problem. The contents of this letter, therefore, should be available to all those who can help in proffering effective solutions for the problem of insecurity in the land.

One of the spinoffs and accelerants is the misinformation and disinformation through the use of fake news. A number of articles, in recent days, have been attributed to me by some people who I believe may be seeking added credence and an attentive audience for their opinions and viewpoints. As you know very well, I will always boldly own what I say and disown what is put into my mouth. But the issue I am addressing here is very serious; it is the issue of life and death for all of us and for our dear country, Nigeria. This issue can no longer be ignored, treated with nonchalance, swept under the carpet or treated with cuddling glove.

The issue is hitting at the foundation of our existence as Nigerians and fast eroding the root of our Nigerian community. I am very much worried and afraid that we are on the precipice and dangerously reaching a tipping point where it may no longer be possible to hold danger at bay. Without being immodest, as a Nigerian who still bears the scar of the Nigerian civil war on my body and with a son who bears the scar of fighting Boko Haram on his body, you can understand, I hope, why I am so concerned. When people are desperate and feel that they cannot have confidence in the ability of government to provide security for their lives and properties, they will take recourse to anything and everything that can guarantee their security individually and collectively.

For over ten years, for four of which you have been the captain of the ship, Boko Haram has menacingly ravaged the land and in spite of government’s claim of victory over Boko Haram, the potency and the activities of Boko Haram, where they are active, remain undiminished, putting lie to government’s claim. The recent explanation of the Chief of Army Staff for non-victory due to lack of commitment and lack of motivation on the part of troops bordering on sabotage speaks for itself. Say what you will, Boko Haram is still a daily issue of insecurity for those who are victimised, killed, maimed, kidnapped, raped, sold into slavery and forced into marriage and for children forcibly recruited into carrying bombs on them to detonate among crowds of people to cause maximum destructions and damage. And Boko Haram will not go away on the basis of sticks alone, carrots must overweigh sticks. How else do you deal with issues such as only about 50% literacy in North-East with over 70% unemployment?

Herdsmen/farmers crises and menace started with government treating the issue with cuddling glove instead of hammer. It has festered and spread. Today, it has developed into banditry, kidnapping, armed robbery and killings all over the country. The unfortunate situation is that the criminality is being perceived as a ‘Fulani’ menace unleashed by Fulani elite in the different parts of the country for a number of reasons but even more, unfortunately, many Nigerians and non-Nigerians who are friends of Nigeria attach vicarious responsibility to you as a Fulani elite and the current captain of the Nigeria ship. Perception may be as potent as reality at times. Whatever may be the grievances of Fulanis, if any, they need to be put out in the open and their grievances, if legitimate, be addressed; and if other ethnic groups have grievances, let them also be brought out in the open and addressed through debate and dialogue.

The main issue, if I may dare say, is poor management or mismanagement of diversity which, on the other hand, is one of our greatest and most important assets. As a result, very onerous cloud is gathering. And rain of destruction, violence, disaster and disunity can only be the outcome. Nothing should be taken for granted, the clock is ticking with the cacophony of dissatisfaction and disaffection everywhere in and outside the country. The Presidency and the Congress in the US have signalled to us to put our house in order. The House of Lords in the UK had debated the Nigerian security situation. We must understand and appreciate the significance, implication and likely consequences of such concerns and deliberations.

No one can stop hate speech, violent agitation and smouldering violent agitation if he fans the embers of hatred, disaffection and violence. It will continue to snowball until it is out of control. A stitch in time saves nine, goes the old wise saying.

With the death of Funke, Chief Fasoranti’s daughter, some sympathetic Nigerian groups are saying “enough is enough”. Prof. Anya, a distinguished Nigerian merit Laureate, has this to say “We can no longer say with certainty that we have a nation”. Niger-Delta leaders, South-Eastern leaders, Middle-Belt leaders and Northern Elders Forum have not remained quiet. Different ordinary Nigerians at home and abroad are calling for different measures to address or ameliorate the situation. All the calls and cries can only continue to be ignored at the expense of Nigerian unity, if not its continued existence.

To be explicit and without equivocation, Mr. President and General, I am deeply worried about four avoidable calamities:
  • abandoning Nigeria into the hands of criminals who are all being suspected, rightly or wrongly, as Fulanis and terrorists of Boko Haram type;

  • spontaneous or planned reprisal attacks against Fulanis which may inadvertently or advertently mushroom into pogrom or Rwanda-type genocide that we did not believe could happen and yet it happened.

  • similar attacks against any other tribe or ethnic group anywhere in the country initiated by rumours, fears, intimidation and revenge capable of leading to pogrom;

  • violent uprising beginning from one section of the country and spreading quickly to other areas and leading to dismemberment of the country.
It happened to Yugoslavia not too long ago. If we do not act now, one or all of these scenarios may happen. We must pray and take effective actions at the same time. The initiative is in the hands of the President of the nation, but he cannot do it alone. In my part of the world, if you are sharpening your cutlass and a mad man comes from behind to take the cutlass from you, you need other people’s assistance to have your cutlass back without being harmed. The mad men with serious criminal intent and terrorism as core value have taken cutlass of security. The need for assistance to regain control is obviously compelling and must be embraced now.

A couple of weeks ago at a public lecture, I had said, among other things, that:

“In all these issues of mobilisation for national unity, stability, security, cooperation, development, growth and progress, there is no consensus. Like in the issue of security, government should open up discussion, debate and dialogue as part of consultation at different levels and the outcome of such deliberations should be collated to form inputs into a national conference to come up with the solution that will effectively deal with the issues and lead to rapid development, growth and progress which will give us a wholesome society and enhanced living standard and livelihood in an inclusive and shared society. It will be a national programme. We need unity of purpose and nationally accepted strategic roadmap that will not change with whims and caprices of any government. It must be owned by the citizens, people’s policy and strategy implemented by the government no matter its colour and leaning.

Some of the groups that I will suggest to be contacted are: traditional rulers, past heads of service (no matter how competent or incompetent they have been and how much they have contributed to the mess we are in), past heads of para-military organisations, private sector, civil society, community leaders particularly in the most affected areas, present and past governors, present and past local government leaders, religious leaders, past Heads of State, past intelligence chiefs, past Heads of Civil Service and relevant current and retired diplomats, members of opposition and any groups that may be deemed relevant.”

The President must be seen to be addressing this issue with utmost seriousness and with maximum dispatch and getting all hands on deck to help. If there is failure, the principal responsibility will be that of the President and no one else. We need cohesion and concentration of effort and maximum force – political, economic, social, psychological and military – to deal successfully with the menace of criminality and terrorism separately and together. Blame game among own forces must be avoided. It is debilitating and only helpful to our adversary. We cannot dither anymore. It is time to confront this threat headlong and in a manner that is holistic, inclusive and purposeful.

For the sake of Nigeria and Nigerians, I pray that God may grant you, as our President, the wisdom, the understanding, the political will and the courage to do what is right when it is right and without fear or favour. May God save, secure, protect and bless Nigeria. May He open to us a window of opportunity that we can still use to prevent the worst happening. As we say in my village, “May God forbid bad thing.”
OLUSEGUN OBASANJO, July 15, 2019

As released by Kehinde Akinyemi, Special Assistant Media.


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Insecurity: Militants accept ceasefire in Imo - ITREALMS

ITREALMS:
The intervention of the Deputy Governor of Imo State, Rt. Hon. Gerald Irona, has yielded some god news with all the parties in the renewed violence in Ohaji in Ohaji/Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State, weekend, accepted to end every form of hostility unconditionally, reports ITREALMS.

Rising from a 2-day meeting in the Deputy Governor’s ancestral home, Oguta, the militants agreed to forgo all their grievances and immediately end every form of hostility in the area.

Speaking during the meeting, Deputy Governor of Imo State, Rt. Hon. Gerald Irona frowned at the renewed violence in the area, in spite of subsisting amnesty from the State Government.

He reiterated that the State Government may not hesitate to cancel the amnesty programme, if hostilities and cult-related violence continue.

“I invited you to discuss the security challenge in your area. I want to know what really the problem is. Why are you people making trouble again, after receiving amnesty? The government decided to give you benefit of the doubt. We are not interested in witch hunting anyone. No government will fold its arms and allow her citizens terrorized, harassed and killed under whatever guise. Whatever the issue is, we shall not patronize criminals. The hostility must end immediately and unconditionally.”

After discussions that lasted for two days, all the warring parties accepted the Deputy Governor’s proposal of an unconditional end to every form of hostility in the area.

They expressed gratitude to the Executive Governor of Imo State, Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha and his Deputy, Rt. Hon. Gerald Irona for the decision to dialogue with them, instead of outright hostility, promising to turn a new leaf.

Reacting to the development, Chairman, Imo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission -ISOPADEC, Barr. Magnus Obido expressed gratitude to the state Government for its swift intervention, even as he charged the militant youth to turn a new leaf.

He described the latest violence in the area as unfortunate, warning that only peace and civilized behavior can guarantee meaningful development of the area.

Part of the resolutions is that the militants will go back home and preach the gospel of reconciliation, while taking steps to ensure the return of community members that fled as a result of the renewed violence.

It would be recalled that a delegation of Awarra and Ochia communities of Ohaji, in Ohaji Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State last Friday called on the Deputy Governor of the State, Rt. Hon. Gerald Irona for help in addressing the perennial security challenge in the area. The militants were involved in a supremacy battle, which left the affected communities deserted.

The meeting was attended by critical stakeholders from the area, among whom are: member representing Ohaji/Egbema state constituency in Imo State House of Assembly, Hon. Heclus Okoro, Chairman, Transition Committee, Ohaji/Egbema Local Government Area, Hon. Damian Ezeruo, Chairman, ISOPADEC, Barr. Magnus Obido, ex agitators, youth leaders, among others.

Uboshe Uboshe/Editor

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Monday, July 15, 2019

NCC remits N51.3b to FG consolidated fund in Q1 2019 - ITREALMS

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has remitted N51.3 billion to the Federal Government’s Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF) in the first quarter of 2019, reports ITREALMS.

The remittance, according to the Executive Vice Chairman (EVC/CEO), NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, is in compliance with the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2007 (FRA 2007).

The payment represents “Payment on Account” in respect of operating surplus of N44 billion and N7.3 billion spectrum assignment fee collected, both of which are due to the Federal Government as at April 30, 2019.

According to the FRA 2007, such payments are to be made every year after preparation of Audited Accounts.

NCC Director, Public Affairs, Dr, Henry Nkemadu, in a press statement made available toITREALMS noted specifically, Section 22, Sub-section 1 of the Act states that, “Notwithstanding the provisions of any written law governing the Corporation, each Corporation shall establish a general reserve fund and shall allocate thereto at the end of each financial year, one fifth of its operating surplus for the year.”

Section 22, Sub-section 2 of the Act states further that, “The balance of the operating surplus shall be paid into the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF) of the Federal Government not later than one month following the statutory deadline for publishing each Corporation’s Account.”

Aside from remitting the operating surplus, Section 17, Sub-section 3 of the Nigerian Communication Act (NCA, 2003) also stipulates that spectrum assignment fees generated shall be remitted 100 per cent to the Federal Government.

The Section states that, “the Commission shall pay all monies accruing from the sales of Spectrum under Part 1 of Chapter VIII into the Consolidated Revenue Fund (CRF).”

Commenting further, the EVC, Prof. Danbatta, said the Commission had taken the initiative to be making payments on Account as it generates revenue.

Danbatta noted that through effective regulatory oversight by the Commission, telecommunications sector has witnessed phenomenal growth since 2001, making it an enabler of economic growth and development.

“To date, telecoms industry has positively impacted all the sectors of the economy including banking, healthcare, commerce, transportation, agriculture, education and so on, with increased quarter-on-quarter contribution to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP),” Prof. Danbatta added.

For instance, latest data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed that the telecoms industry contributed 10.11 per cent to Nigeria's GDP in the first quarter of 2019.

This represents a 0.92 per cent increase from the first quarter of the last year. This year's first quarter contribution is also 0.26 per cent more than the figure (9.85 per cent) recorded in the last quarter of 2018.

“From 2001 till date, telecoms investment has increased tremendously from $500 million to over $70 billion, just as the Commission intensifies measures aimed to further facilitate investment growth in telecoms infrastructure to drive the economy, especially through the licensed Infrastructure Companies (InfraCos). We are also working with necessary stakeholders across all levels of government to address identified impediments to investment drive in the sector,” Danbatta said.

Danbatta, while providing latest data on the industry to underscore the impressive growth already recorded in the industry, said “in the 21st Century, access to pervasive broadband is a game changer for any economy.”

He explained further: “The Commission has since placed greater emphasis on broadband development as the next frontier for economic growth by driving efficiency and innovations in Nigeria. Consequently, through painstaking implementation of our 8-Point Agenda with the need to facilitate broadband development topping the agenda, we have been able to increase broadband penetration to 33.13 per cent as at end of May, 2019.”

Accordingly, Danbatta stated that as at May this year, there were over 173.6 million active mobile lines across mobile networks, corresponding to a teledensity of 90.98 per cent. Internet subscriptions during the month stood at 122.6 million up from 119 million in April.

The EVC noted that while the industry has provided and continues to provide direct and indirect jobs for millions of Nigerians, the Commission, through effective regulatory approach, is embarking on more initiatives to boost access to telecoms services in rural, unserved and underserved areas across the country “by ensuring service availability, accessibility and affordability for more Nigerians.”

Remmy Nweke/DoP

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TECNO wins Africa Information Technology & Telecoms Awards Phone of the Year 2019 - ITREALMS

ITREALMS:
TECNO SPARK 3, a smartphone model by TECNO, a global premier mobile phone brand, has been awarded the smartphone brand of the year at the 2019 edition of the Africa Information Technology & Telecoms Awards (AITTA), reports ITREALMS.

AITTA recognises customer service, innovation and excellence in Africa Telecom and Information Technology industry. The reputable awards now in its third year and has been acclaimed as one of the most prestigious and biggest platform recognising excellence and innovation in the African telecoms and technology industry.

TECNO SPARK 3 was awarded as the phone of the year as a result of its cutting edge features as well as its outing market outing positive reception of the TECNO brand loyals and customers. This is the only smartphone recognized by AITTA this year. As one of the most remarkable devices to “light up” the photos, SPARK 3 have been upgraded by AI technology to furthermore advanced the camera features to be available in Africa, middle-east and Southeast Asia market.

Starting their business from the Africa market in 2006, TECNO has been Africa’s leading smartphone brand and was the first dual-SIM handset supplier to the African continent, which boosted an astonishing 53% of all Smartphone sales in Africa in the year 2011. Focusing on providing high performance and cutting edge smartphone that use the latest technology and at sweet price point, TECNO smartphones have become incredibly popular throughout Africa due to the exceptional value-for-money they offer.

TRANSSION, TECNO Mobile ’s parent company, its brand portfolio comprises leading mobile phone brands in emerging markets. In 2018, TRANSSION sold 124 million mobile phones globally. IDC figures for 2018 show that TRANSSION ranks 4th in global mobile phone brands and holds the largest market share in Africa. Their global sales network covers more than 70 countries in emerging markets including Nigeria, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Egypt, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Vietnam and Bangladesh to name

Chuks Egbune/Editor

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Funke Olakunrin death:What Asiwaju told Pa Fasoranti in condolence letter - ITREALMS

"Dear Papa
"My heart aches with a profound sense of grief and loss over the tragic death of your daughter, the beloved Funke Olakunrin.

"Funke was an amiable and good soul who did and meant no harm to anyone. Like her father, she exemplified the best traits of our people. It is senseless and extremely painful that such a fine human being would be attacked by armed assailants while she was travelling with family members along Akure-Ore road.

"Funke and I shared a happy and close relationship. We regularly exchanged ideas and advice to each other. We could speak to each other freely and honestly because of mutual respect that described our relationship. These talks enriched me. I shall miss them.

"When she experienced an ailment last year, she informed me. I was able to help.  Funke’s condition improved.

"Showing her fine personal character and gratitude, Funke wrote the following words to me which I wish to share with you now to illustrate the goodness of her spirit:

 “Thank you so much for your help. I appreciate your help. You helped me to get another opportunity to live. Mo dupe. Best regards and with all respect.”

"Not long after, she sent another message: “Just to appreciate you once more. I am here Sir. The treatment is progressing. I am trusting GOD. Thank u for making it possible. Mo dupe Sir. May you continue to grow in His Grace. Amen.”

"I shall always treasure the relationship we had and will hold these messages in remembrance for I see myself as your son who respects and admires you deeply. It is from this wellspring of affection and emotion that I write this letter.

"Unfortunately, some people are eagerly trying to use this tragedy to advance their political agendas. I sincerely regret such behaviour for it is wrong and out of place.  It does not well fit the moment. This is a time for consolation and genuine condolence.

"Everyone loves and supports you. I am sure that no effort will be spared in identifying the assailants and bringing them to full justice. I have been assured by government and law enforcement authorities that the perpetrators of this terrible act will be apprehended and face the brunt of the law for what they have committed.

"We have faith that justice will indeed be done. But we must seek more than this. All of us who love you must also work together to honour Funke’s life by taking concrete steps to make sure such attacks do not continue to occur against the innocent and the peaceful.

"I too have lost a precious child. I have a sense of what you are going through. Words are insufficient to express my innermost sentiments at this moment. All I can say is that my fervent prayer is for God to extend His divine hand in order to lend the comfort to you and the Fasoranti and Olakunrin families that only He can provide.

"May the loving and beautiful soul of Funke now and forever more rest gently in the bosom of the Lord. May God give you the strength and solace to carry on.

"Papa, Olorun a duro ti yin. E o ni di agbaya!

Asiwaju Bola Tinubu

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Konga