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Nigeria Asks For $1 .1b Advance From Eni And Shell In OPL 245 Corruption Case

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imageresize Nigeria Asks For $1 .1b Advance From Eni And Shell In OPL 245 Corruption Case

MILAN (Reuters) – Nigeria asked a Milan court on Wednesday to order Eni and Royal Dutch Shell to pay $1.092 billion as an immediate advance payment for damages it is claiming in one of the oil industry’s biggest-ever corruption trials.
At a hearing into alleged corruption linked to Eni and Shell’s 2011 acquisition of the OPL 245 field, Lucio Lucia, lawyer for the Nigerian government, called for a guilty verdict and an advance payment, ahead of any broader damages package set by a court at a later date.
Lucia did not specify how much Nigeria was seeking in damages overall but said the disputed deal had deprived Abuja of “profit oil”, adding “these are massive amounts”.
The lawyer said that calculated under two different scenarios, the profits that had been lost amounted to $4.5 billion and $5.9 billion respectively.
The long-running bribery case revolves around the purchase of the OPL 245 offshore field, some 150 km off the Niger Delta, for about $1.3 billion from Malabu, a company owned by former Nigerian oil minister Dan Etete.
Prosecutors allege that about $1.1 billion of that was siphoned off to politicians and middlemen, half of it to Etete himself.
Shell says the 2011 agreement was a settlement of long-standing litigation, following the previous allocation of the block by the Nigerian government to Shell and Malabu.
Etete, Eni, Shell and the managers accused in the Milan court case, including Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi, have all denied any wrongdoing.
Eni said in a statement on Wednesday that the purchase price for OPL 245 was “congruous and reasonable” considering the value of the field and investment needed to bring it into production.
In July, prosecutors in the case asked for Eni and Shell to be fined and some of their present and former executives, including Eni’s Descalzi, to be jailed.
They also requested the confiscation of a total of $1.092 billion from all the defendants in the case, the equivalent of the bribes alleged to have been paid.
The next hearing in the trial is scheduled for Sept. 21, when the defence is due to present its case.
(Reporting by Emilio Parodi; Writing by Stephen Jewkes; Editing by Jason Neely and Alexander Smith)

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FG Adds Emirates To List Of Banned Airlines

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images 9 2 FG Adds Emirates To List Of Banned Airlines

The federal government has withdrawn the approval granted to Emirates to conduct international flight operations in the country.
Hadi Sirika, minister of aviation, disclosed this via a post on his Twitter handle on Friday.
The ban will take effect on September 21, 2020.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) had, in a memo earlier in September, included Emirates in the list of approved airlines for international flights for both Abuja and Lagos airports.
But the minister said the decision to reverse the approval was taken after a meeting of the presidential task force (PTF) on COVID-19 with European Union ambassadors on Friday.
Sirika also said there were discussions on the ban on Lufthansa and Air France-KLM.
“The PTF sub committee met today with EU Ambassadors to discuss Lufthansa, Air France/KLM ban. The meeting progressed well. Emirates Airlines’s situation was reviewed & they are consequently included in the list of those not approved, with effect from Monday the 21st Sept. 2020,” the minister wrote.

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Union Bank supports 10 NGOs with N1.7m through UnionBetta donations

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images 1 1 Union Bank supports 10 NGOs with N1.7m through UnionBetta donations

Union Bank, a leading financial institutions, has again delivered on its promise to support charitable organisations with a portion of proceeds from the UnionBetta savings product.  

Launched in 2016, UnionBetta is a sub-account which allows Union Bank customers earn attractive interest rates for saving for as little as N5000 monthly. In return, the bank donates a percentage of the interest earned to select Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) on behalf of its customers.

In selecting the recipients, priority was given to NGOs making impact in areas such as gender equality, education, talent development and agriculture which are key pillars of Union Bank’s citizenship efforts that align with Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 1,2,4, 5 and

This year, a total of One million, Seven Hundred Thousand Naira (N1.7m) was donated to 10 different charitable organisations to help support their activities. Some of the recipients include United Methodist Church of Nigeria Orphanage, Jalingo; Zinnok Initiative for Women & Children, Abia; Teens Dream Initiative, Kwara and Lagos Food Bank Initiative. Others include Uduak Charles Diaries, Akwa-Ibom; Flexisaf Foundation, Abuja and Adolescent Friendly Research Initiative & Care, Ekiti.

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Leadership crisis rocks Airline Operators of Nigeria

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images 2020 09 18T102156.435 Leadership crisis rocks Airline Operators of Nigeria

Cracks have emerged in the ranks of the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) following allegations that the choice of its new leaders was frought with anomalies after and disenfranchisement of several members.

At the Annual General Meeting of the Association held at the Murtala Muhammed Airport terminal two (MMA2) Conference Hall on September 16, the Chairman of Azman Air, Abdulmunaf Yunusa Sarina, was elected President, taking over from Captain Nogie Meggison, while the Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyema, emerged the Vice President.

Other newly elected executive members are Shehu Wada of Max Air, while the Chief Executive Officer of Med-View Airline, Muneer Bankole, his counterpart at Overland Airways, Captain Edward Boyo, among others were elected as members of the Board of Trustees. The AGM also approved the change of leadership nomenclature from Executive Chairman to President.

In his acceptance speech, Yunusa expressed gratitude to the Association and pledged to work hard and ensure that the challenges airlines are facing like multiple taxation, VAT, duty waiver and forex constraints would be addressed.“As an active member of AON, I am fully aware of all the pending matters and problems facing our Association such as the issue of multiple taxation, VAT and Federal Government’s intervention to airline operators, duty waiver and forex. I will like to assure you that I will continue from where the former chairman stopped to take the matter up with all relevant authorities until we achieve our goals.

“Although it is difficult for an association like AON to solve its problems, we shall do our very best. I am therefore requesting the cooperation and support from each and every one of you to achieve that. I will like to thank the former Chairman for the success recorded during his tenure and hope that he will always be available to advise and guide us,” Yunusa said.

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