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Senate Uncovers Multi- Billion Naira Fraud In NTA

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images 49 1 Senate Uncovers Multi- Billion Naira Fraud In NTA

Senate Uncovers Alleged Multi-billion Naira Fraud In NTA
The Nigerian Senate has uncovered an alleged multi-billion Naira fraud in the joint venture operations between, the Nigerian Television Authority(NTA) and a Chinese Satellite Pay TV, StarTime.
The allegation came up when the Senate Joint Committee on Finance and National Planning scrutinized the spending and expenditure of the Nigerian Television Authority for 2021 with the details of the 2021-2023 MTEF & FSP documents,
The Senate panel said it was stunned to discover that the multi-billion naira deal with StarTimes was not captured anywhere in the documents submitted to it as presented by the Director-General, Mallam Mohammed Yakubu.
Trouble started for NTA after the Chairman of the Senate Panel, Solomon Olamilekan, asked why NTA was blocking StarTime from being registered with the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).
In response, Yakubu denied the allegation, stressing that NTA could not have blocked StarTimes as it was currently in a Joint Venture Agreement with the company.
The DG’s statement prompted further questions from the Senate Panel on how much NTA had earned from the Joint Venture with StarTimes over the years.
But even more, surprising to the Senate Panel was that the Joint Venture was not stated anywhere in the documents NTA submitted for the committee’s perusal.
The suspicious Senate panel demanded to see records of what NTA generates from production, adverts and documentaries.
It also asked that NTA should return on Monday with its debt profile that contains the names of its debtors, the date, amount incurred as well as the name of the officials that authorized it for publication.
The NTA entered the Joint Venture with StarTime in 2010 with a sharing ratio of 70-30 in favour of the Beijing based company.
Irked by NTA’s outing, the Senate panel ordered that henceforth all revenue generating agencies of government should remit all their earnings into the Consolidated Revenue Funds out of which their cost of collection will be given to them. This, the panel said will shore up revenue for government as well as block wastages in the system.

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Operation Panther : FRSC Records 1 ,975 Arrests In 11 Days

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images 22 4 Operation Panther : FRSC Records 1 ,975 Arrests In 11 Days

The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) have arrested 1,975 traffic offenders within the first two weeks of its ‘Operation Panther’ traffic exercise.The arrests were made between September 1st and September 11th 2020, with a total of 2,225 traffic violations recorded.
‘Operation Panther’ was flagged off as a special patrol exercise by the Zone 7 of the FRSC, comprising the FCT and Niger State. The exercise was aimed at bringing about a new orientation for driver’s to deal with hazard
headlong and promote responsible driving in the FCT and Niger as well as to ensure that only licensed drivers ply the highways.
The Zonal Commanding Officer, Zone 7 HQ Abuja, ACM Jonas Agwu, in a statement, expressed delight at the outcome of the Special Patrol, saying it was a fallout of the ongoing Special Intervention Patrol (SIP) aimed at instilling traffic sanity in the Federal Capital Territory and Niger state.
Mr. Agwu noted that the outcome revealed critical offences which are top causative factors behind fatal road traffic crashes. The critical offences, according to ACM Agwu, stand at 772 offences with overloading which has become a daily infraction standing at 195 offences. Further breakdown of the two weeks enforcements revealed that 155 offenders were arrested for driving and phoning infractions, while traffic light infractions (light sign violation) stands at 48 offences.
Other violations include: 102 offenders for Tyre violation, 5 offences for dangerous driving, while riding motorcycle without crash helmet stands at 79. The Zonal Commanding Officer warned the motoring public that ‘’Operation Panther II which is the second phase had commenced on Monday 14th Sept, 2020.
He said the other two weeks will focus on unlicensed drivers, obstructions and lane indiscipline in addition to vehicle number plate violation, failure to install speed limit device, driver’s license violation and failure to move over’’ traffic infractions, ACM Agwu said. He appealed to motorists in the FCT and Niger State to support the ongoing patrol by obeying traffic rules to promote responsible driving.
“The Zone will not relent in the efforts which has the complimentary and collaboration backings of Sister Agencies such as the Nigerian Army, Nigeria Police Force, Nigeria Security and Civil Defense Corps , among others”; he said.

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The Emir of Zazzau Alhaji Shehu Idris has died l Fact Print

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Alhaji Shehu Idris,

The Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Shehu Idris, has passed away this morning, August 20, in Abuja.

Earlier this year, the King celebrated his 45th year on the throne of Zazzau.

He was the 18th king of the Zazzau kingdom from the Fulani tribe, who died at the age of 84.

Sources in the kingdom said he had been rushed to hospital on Friday, where he succumbed to his injuries.

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How FG Delegation To Silicon Valley Benefited Nigerian Startups – Osinbajo

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images 13 4 How FG Delegation To Silicon Valley Benefited Nigerian Startups - Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has outlined how is trip to the Silicon Valley in the United States has benefitted Nigerian start-ups, some of whom have gotten funds to grow their business.
Osinbajo disclosed this milestone when he spoke on the Fire Side Chat with Nick Clegg, Facebook VP of Policy and Communication, a former Deputy Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
He explained that there have been active partnerships between Nigerian start-ups and some US tech firms, assuring Nigerians that more investment is expected to pour in.
“Both tours were extremely successful. At the Silicon Valley, Nigerian start-ups got a chance to pitch their products to tech sector investors, that was very good, in fact before we left Silicon Valley, one of our venture platforms was able to sign a deal of about $10m with the Nigerian US Council, even before we left,” he said
“Since then we have seen tremendous activities post-trip. We were also at the Facebook campus, which was an absolute delight, we enjoyed being around there, seeing the excitement and a great deal of energy that was encouraging for many start ups seeing at close quarters what a comparable giant was doing, and I think this was very helpful.”
He explained that the entertainment sector has also benefitted from his trip to Hollywood. “Asides from that, we think that the visit helped in showing our seriousness of the tech sector and through the entertainment industry also, we did quite a few meetings also with the entertainment industry.”
“In fact, as of 2018/2019, we had gotten about $377million in investments in the tech sector. This is excellent even though it is still scratching the surface if one considers the size of our economy and the size of the country, but there were very significant gains and I am very happy to have been able to do it.”
“Of course, two visits or one visit doesn’t ever answer the various challenges, but I think we started the interactions that have been very useful and we will continue to engage.”
Speaking on how government will fix the challenges and manage the peculiarities of Nigeria’s tech and creative industry, he said, “With regulation, we are dealing with uncharted territory, because quite a few of what we are seeing are entirely new, and I must say that the regulatory authorities have done quite a decent work, trying to grapple with some of the newness of the things that they are seeing.
“For example, we worked on the payment services licenses, these are licenses for fintech companies that are doing some kind of banking type jobs but are not deposit banks, we had to create some room for them, and what has happened is that a collaborative effort of government, and the tech and entertainment sector worked on this and set up a technology and creativity advisory group, and these are young innovators, entrepreneurs etc. who worked with us on the industrial and competitiveness council to craft some of these regulations and to think through some of these problems.”
“Those licenses were particularly important because it carved out space that was previously dominated entirely by deposit money banks. Of course you know that they are the least willing to have their lunch taken away from them.”
“There have been other ways that the government is trying to fix the issues such as access to credit, which we have worked very hard to ensure that there is some access to credit for innovators, we’ve spoken a bit about foreign investments in Nigeria, but more importantly, what the Bank of Industry is doing is creating a tech fund, the CBN has also established a technology fund and we are working with the AfDB which has a $500m fund which we are at the final stage of trying to bring that into existence.”
“So there is quite a bit going on in order to ensure that there is access to funding while we are improving the environment for business as well as the environment for tech companies to operate. I think that one thing that is certain is the change in the technology space which is so rapid that you know, regulators are practically chasing after the innovation, to see how best to regulate without stifling these companies.”
Speaking on the amended National Broadcasting Commission code, he said, “The NBC code you mentioned is one where there is activity around and we are trying to take a second look at it, there are those who say it is anti-competitive and there are those who claim that it is pro competition.”
“It is one which I think we should take a second look at. Basically what it says is that if you have a licensed product, for TV or film, you are expected to share it with other platforms.”
“I understand the argument of those who say it is a violation of copyrights and intellectual properties in other ways which is a very strong point and which is why I think it deserves to be given a second look and see where there are ways of moderating that to be more acceptable, so as not to stifle the works of very hardworking creative people who are creating content in film, music etc.”

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