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AfDB Issues First “Light Up and Power Africa” Theme Bond



Dr. Akinwumi Adesina, President, African Development Bank

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has issued the first “Light Up and Power Africa” Bond for SEK 733 million (approximately JPY 10 billion) sold to the Dai-ichi Life Insurance Company, Limited, the sole investor in the transaction.

The “Light Up and Power Africa” Bond supports AfDB’s ambition to achieve an important goal of realizing Africa’s energy potential and bridging the continent’s energy deficit.

Over 645 million Africans have no access to energy. The electricity access rate for African countries is just over 40 percent, the lowest in the world. This undermines efforts to lift Africans out of poverty. Access to energy is crucial for the attainment of health and education outcomes, reducing the cost of doing business, unlocking economic potential, and creating jobs.

Over 90% of Africa’s primary schools lack electricity while 600,000 Africans die each year due to a lack of clean cooking energy. Insufficient energy access handicaps the operations of hospitals and emergency services; compromises educational attainment; and drives up the cost of doing business.

Energy access for all is therefore one of the key drivers of inclusive growth as it creates opportunities for women, youth, and children in urban and rural areas. The aspirational goal of this priority area is to help the continent achieve universal electricity access by 2025 with a strong focus on encouraging clean and renewable energy solutions.

This will require generating 160 GW of new capacity, 130 million new on-grid connections, 75 million new off-grid connections and providing 150 million households with access to clean cooking solutions.

As part of this effort, “Kenya’s Last Mile Connectivity Program II”, an energy project that provides access to electricity in Kenya, aims to provide electricity to 1.5 million people mainly from low-income groups and micro-enterprises that improve living standards and support economic growth.

Hassatou N’Sele, Acting Vice President, Finance and Treasurer of the AfDB Group, says  – “Our mission is the sustainable development of Africa and our core priorities are the High 5’s: “Light Up and Power Africa”; “Feed Africa”; “Industrialize Africa”; “Integrate Africa” and “Improve the Quality of Life for the People of Africa”.

We would like to thank Dai-ichi Life for their interest and investment in “Light up and Power Africa” Bond. Their role in this transaction is helping towards our goal of attaining universal electricity access by 2025, with a strong focus on encouraging clean and renewable energy solutions.”

The AfDB will use its best efforts to direct an amount equal to the net proceeds of the issue of the Notes to lending projects within the strategic “Light Up & Power Africa” priority, subject to and in accordance with the AfDB’s lending standards.

The proceeds of the Notes will be included in the ordinary capital resources of the AfDB and will be used for the general operations of the Issuer in accordance with the Agreement Establishing the African Development Bank.

The Bond was offered to Dai-ichi Life in a private placement format with Deutsche Bank AG as the sole arranger of the bond.

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NDIC Warns Nigerians of “Wonder Banks”



The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has urged Nigerians to be wary of “wonder banks” that give extra-ordinary interest rates and profits on investments.

Its Managing Director, Alhaji Umaru Ibrahim, gave the advice in an address at the NDIC Special Day at the ongoing 29th Enugu International Trade Fair in Enugu on Thursday.

Umaru, who was represented by Mr Festus Ekechi, NDIC Director of Strategy Development, said many Nigerians had continued to lose fortunes and even their life savings to Ponzi schemes and other illegal fund managers with disastrous consequences.

“The corporation’s activities, through the supervision of banks continuous monitoring and oversight, serve as consumer protection for depositors (in legal banks) which enhances confidence in the financial system.

“This acts as an incentive for the unbanked to access financial services of licensed banks.

“Poor and uninformed depositors need assurance that the services of licensed deposit taking institutions are safe and that they have access to their money whenever they need it,” he said.

The NDIC managing director said the NDIC was determined to ensure the safety and soundness of the nation’s financial system.

According to him, the key mandate of the corporation is to provide deposit guarantee to depositors of insured financial institutions, banks supervision, distress resolution, and bank liquidation.

He said that since inception, NDIC had grown from strength-to-strength in ensuring that the over-riding public policy objectives for establishing a deposit insurance system in the country were realised.

“With the protection of depositors in mind, the Maximum Deposit Insurance Coverage (MDIC) per depositor per bank progressively increased from N50, 000 in 1989 to its current N500, 000 per depositor per Deposit Money Banks (DMBs).

“Similarly, the insured limit for Micro-Finance Banks (MFBs) and Primary Mortgage Banks (PMBs) in 2009 was increased from N100, 000 to N200, 000 per depositor per MFB/PMB in 2010.

“However, on August 4, 2016, the Minister of Finance approved an upward review of the deposit insured limit for depositors of PMBs to N500, 000 in order to ensure coverage of over 90 per cent of depositors in the banking sub-sector.

“It is pertinent to point out that depositors who have funds in excess of the insured limit are entitled to liquidation dividend after recovery of debts and sales of physical assets of the closed banks,” he said.

Earlier, the President of Enugu Chamber of Commerce, Chief Emeka Udeze, had commended NDIC for always partnering with the chamber to educate the banking public on the safety of their bank deposits.

Udeze said that NDIC remained resolute in the protection of depositors’ funds within banks and other financial institutions in the country.

“The NDIC has helped to build confidence amongst bank depositors, thereby helping to stabilise the Nigerian financial system,” he said.

The fair, which has entered its 7th day, has its theme as “Engendering the Competiveness of Nigerian Products in the Global Market.”

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SIGMA Pensions Launches Mobile App To Redefine Customer Experience



Sigma Pensions Limited, one of Nigeria’s leading Pension Fund Administrators with the goal of providing exceptional value to their stakeholders through the delivery of superior pension administrative services recently launched its mobile App; the Sigma Buddy.

The development of Sigma Buddy is evident in the organisation’s desire to be the Pension Manager of Choice providing innovative solutions and redefining customer experience.

It is fast, convenient and easy to navigate. It eliminates the hassle of walking into any of their branches to sort out account related issues.

Access to personal information, account related information and even communication with the customer’s assigned relationship manager is made possible with the Sigma Buddy.

For over a decade, Sigma Pensions has provided innovative solutions to its customers and the mobile App is an excellent opportunity to tailor more quality services with emphasis on the ease of transactions while building a stronger relationship with their customers.

One of the outstanding features of the Sigma Buddy is the ability to request for your e-statements.

The platform also provides a secure way to find their nearest branches closest to you. The App is free and available for download on both Play store and Apple store.

‘’We are revolutionizing the process of Pension fund administration and the first step towards achieving this is to offer easy access to our customers by bridging the gap between them and their retirement savings account.

This is the motivation for developing the Sigma Buddy’’.-Dave Uduanu, MD, Sigma Pensions Limited.

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Heritage Bank Achieves ISO 27001 Information Security Management Certification



Heritage Bank Plc, has achieved the Information Security Management Certification from International Standards Organisation (ISO).

This certification also known as the ISO 27001: 2013 is part of the ISO 27000 family of standards which helps organisations keep information assets secure. The certification was achieved on the heels of the bank’s drive to revolutionize the banking sector digital experience with Octopus, by putting in place a systematic approach to managing sensitive organisational information, ensuring it remains seamless, secure and available.

The Octopus platform owes numerous benefits to the users, thereby enable small businesses key into electronic payment system easily, efficient collections, social integration, retention strategy, bills payment, mobile virtual top-up, funds transfer, balance enquiry, movie show time, news.

With the introduction of Octopus, the ISO 27001: 2013 Information Security Management Certification is proof of the Bank’s demonstrated ability to consistently provide products and services that gives service consumers and customers an easily recognisable security hallmark.

Speaking on the award received, Ifie Sekibo, MD/CEO of Heritage Bank Plc, reiterated the bank’s commitment for secured services, whilst assuring customers that their information is appropriately protected and, as such, reduces the need to undertake time consuming and costly onsite security audits reducing time and cost for both parties.

According to him, the certification demonstrates credibility and trust, which reduces customer and supply chain audit and ISO 27001 certification reduces third party scrutiny of your Information Security Management by customers and the wider supply chain.

“The achievement of ISO 27001 will differentiate two competing organisations in the market place, providing a valuable competitive advantage. Increased legislative and regulatory compliance ISO 27001 supports compliance with relevant laws such as the Data Protection Act 1998 and software copyright legislation.

This in turn reduces the risk of facing prosecution and fines. An organisation’s liability in security incidents may be reduced if it is certified ISO 27001 compliant,”

He further explained that it reduces customer and supply chain audit, stating that ISO 27001 certification reduces third party scrutiny of your Information Security Management by customers and the wider supply chain.

As ISO 27001 is the current international benchmark for Information Security Management, it is increasingly recognised that compliance with the standard is supportive evidence of adequate security.

Considerations and outcomes To achieve ISO 27001 certification, an organisation must produce documentation that demonstrates that it has developed an Information Security Management System that complies with the standard.

Organisations should consider producing most of this documentation even if they are not going for certification as it provides a best practice approach for compliance as well.

There are three key issues to note about the standard: Its generic requirements mean that it is applicable to all organisations, regardless of size, type or nature. However, you tailor it to the exact needs of your organisation through the information security controls that you select to implement within your Information Security Management System.

It takes a flexible, risk-driven approach. It is dynamic – it focuses on continual improvement and helps the organisation keep ahead of changes both within and outside the organisation.

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