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Otudeko Emerges FirstBank Chairman

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A change of baton has taken place in Nigeria’s premier financial institution, First Bank of Nigeria Plc, as Dr. Oba Otudeko, an erstwhile non-executive director, was elected on Tuesday by the bank’s Board of Directors to take over from Alhaji (Dr.) Umaru Mutallab as chairman.
Otudeko’s appointment, which is still subject to formal approval by the regulatory bodies, comes in the wake of Alhaji Mutallab’s retirement from the Board after a 13-year stint, the last 10 of which he served as chairman. The latter was appointed director on March 8, 1996 and became chairman of the Board on March 18, 1999.
The appointment of Dr. Oba Otudeko is in sync with FirstBank’s strong corporate governance credentials and best practice, ensuring that there is seamless business continuity and stability amongst all stakeholders. This corporate governance posture has won the Bank much respect and recognition both locally and internationally.
Alhaji Mutallab is retiring at the peak of an outstanding career, which witnessed a plethora of laudable achievements – a record-making and highly successful hybrid offer, the growth of the FirstBank group to nine local subsidiaries, a full-fledged bank in the United Kingdom (FBN Bank (UK) Limited), a branch in Paris through FBN Bank (UK), as well as representative offices in South Africa and China.
The incoming chairman, Dr. Otudeko, a seasoned banker and administrator, was appointed to the Board of FirstBank on May 18, 1997, where he served in various capacities. A foremost investor and major shareholder in many publicly-quoted companies, he was until recently the President of The Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE), elected the 16th President of the NSE in September 2006. His tenure witnessed unprecedented growth in the market, wherein the NSE All-Share Index hit an historical high in May 2008. Despite subsequent market convulsions caused by global economic turbulence, Dr. Otudeko handed over a more liberalised, revitalised and cohesive Stock Exchange to the new Council in August, 2009.
Oba, as he is fondly called, is a highly respected and personable executive who has established a reputation for solid performance and sound judgment in all the disciplines. In recognition of his many contributions to the economic and social development of Nigeria, he has variously been conferred with many awards and honours. Among these are: Member of the Order of the Federal Republic (MFR) in 2000 from the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which was upgraded to the Officer of the Order of the Federal Republic (OFR) in 2003; Honorary Doctor of Science (D.Sc.) from Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye; the ZIK Foundation for Leadership Award; Sardauna Magazine National Excellence and Leadership Lifetime Achiever Award; Nigerian Investment Promotion Achiever of the Year Award; the Paul Harris Fellow Award of Rotary International; Honorary Citizen of Dallas Texas, USA; and recently, Entrepreneur of the Year Award at the ThisDay Awards 2009, amongst other awards.
Beyond his entrepreneurial track, Dr. Otudeko is also a public-spirited leader. At various times, he has been entrusted with high profile national and international assignments. He was Chairman of the National Maritime Authority; Director, Central Bank of Nigeria (1990 – 1997); Council member, West African Bankers’ Association; Member, Nigerian Banks Employers’ Association; Member, Constituent Assembly responsible for drafting a new Constitution, 1988 to 1989, Council member, Manufacturers’ Association of Nigeria; Co-Chairman, Committee on Investment Climate, Nigerian Economic Summit Group; and currently a member of the Nigeria/South Africa Bi-National Commission. Outside Nigeria, he was appointed the Honorary Consul General of the Republic of Liberia to the Federal Republic of Nigeria between 2003 and 2005. Presently, he is the Chancellor, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye in Nigeria.
A diligent and prolific boardroom player, Otudeko is Chairman of the Boards of Honeywell Group Limited, FBN Bank (UK) Limited, First Trustees Nigeria Limited, Fan Milk of Nigeria Plc., and the Nigeria-South Africa Chamber of Commerce. He was the founding Chairman of Econet Wireless Nigeria Limited and remains a Director of Zain Nigeria Limited, the successor company. Furthermore, he is a Director of First Bank of Nigeria Plc., Ecobank Transnational Incorporated (ETI), Khalil & Dibbo (Haulage) Limited, and Lagos Sheraton Hotel. He was formerly a director of Guinness Nigeria Plc, British-American Tobacco Company Limited, and Franco-Nigeria Chamber of Commerce.
He is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers, UK; Fellow of the Institute of Chartered and Corporate Accountants, UK; Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, Nigeria and Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators of Nigeria.
 
 

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Helpful International Travel Tips for First-Time Travelers

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By Adeniyi Ogunfowoke,

You’re excited, obviously because you’re about to head off for your first international trip, and it’s an amazing feeling. It’s also a daunting feeling. How will you cope? How much money will you spend trying to deal with it? It’s inevitable that you’ll make mistakes the first time you travel. Regardless, you can limit these mistakes by following these helpful international travel tips especially if it is your first time.

Get your passport in advance

This is the most important of all tips for first-time international travellers. Avoid unnecessary stress by applying for a passport well before your expected departure date. Don’t book a flight or make any arrangements that can’t be changed until you have a passport in your hand. Some international flights require that you enter your passport number when booking or during online check-in, so it’s best to just have it first before you start booking anything.

Ensure you have access to your money

Gone are the days when you need to carry cash or travellers’ cheques to travel overseas. Now, thanks to the internet, it’s much easier to manage and access money while travelling all over the world. Check with your bank to see if you need to set up a travel alert while you’re abroad so your bank knows when and where you’re travelling. You can also inquire about international fees, and whether they have partner banks in the destination that will help you save money on costly foreign transaction ATM fees. Overall, ensure that you have access to your money.

Book everything in advance

How advance should you book everything? Some experts say that booking airfare between 56-62 days before the departure date is the best way to get a good deal. No matter what, the best time to book is whenever you have the money and are ready to commit to your first international trip. However, as earlier stated, ensure that your documents are ready before booking your flight. Notwithstanding, when you are ready to travel, you can visit Jumia’s hotel and flight marketplace to book your flight. You will get the best available rate.

Give yourself ample time to get over jet lag

As you start booking your first international trip, you may want to pack it all in by planning to visit as many destinations as possible immediately you arrive. This is an action that will leave you stressed. The best advice is to slow down, at least for the first day or two, to recover from jetlag.

Research events going on while you’re there

This will help you make sure that you’re not missing the best events going on in the city — fun things like festivals and ceremonies. Also, be sure to research some of their best cuisines. You don’t want to leave the country without experiencing it.

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Court Dismisses Suit on Sale of 9mobile

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A Federal High Court in Ikoyi, Lagos, on Wednesday dismissed a suit filed by Spectrum Wireless Communications Limited against Emerging Markets Telecommunications Services (EMTS), owners of 9mobile, challenging the sale of the company.

 

The court, presided over by Justice CJ Aneke, in a ruling on the preliminary objections filed by counsel to EMTS, upheld that the defendant’s prayers in Suit No. FHC/L/CS/153/2018 that there was no direct shareholding relationship between Spectrum Wireless and EMTS, thereby vesting on Spectrum the right to sue EMTS to protect its alleged shareholding in

 

The court also upheld the defendant’s position that there was no privity of contract between EMTS and Spectrum as Spectrum was not a shareholder in EMTS and could not be said to have been directly affected by the actions of its shareholders – Mubadala Holdings Cyprus Ltd, Myacynth and Etisalat International Nigeria Ltd.

 

The court further upheld the defendant’s position that if at Spectrum had a right of action, its action should be against PTHNV, the company it originally invested in and not EMTS.

 

The court, therefore, upheld the submission of counsel to EMTS that not being a shareholder of EMTS, Spectrum lacked the locus standi to bring the suit against EMTS on the basis of any decision taken by the shareholders of EMTS.

 

The court, therefore, upheld the defendant’s prayers saying that Spectrum lacked the locus standi to sue, adding that the concept of “indirect shareholding/economic interest” claimed by Spectrum was unknown to Nigerian law, which only recognized members of a company as those named in its Register of Members.

 

Justice Aneke also held that Spectrum is not a party to the credit facilities which it claimed were unlawfully obtained, and its elementary law that only parties to a contract can make judicial claims in respect thereof.

 

The court, therefore, dismissed the suit in its entirety.

 

In his reaction to the ruling, Ore Olajide, Company Secretary/Legal Adviser, 9mobile, said “this was victory for democracy, victory for the rule of law in Nigeria, victory for company law, victory for legal practitioners, victory for corporate lawyers, academia and students of law.

 

“9mobile will continue to focus on satisfying our numerous customers and stakeholders who have faith in us and have stayed the course with us”.

 

It is recalled that Spectrum Wireless Communications sued EMTS and 16 other defendants including United Capital Trustees Limited (‘the Lenders’), the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) over the sale of the telco.

 

The company claimed that it acquired indirect holding of 30 per cent of the shares of EMTS after a private placement and was allotted 4,041,096 Class A shares of Premium Telecommunications Holdings NV (“PTHNV”) which owns 99% of the shares in MyaCynth Coperative UA (“MyaCynth”).

 

The plaintiff also claimed that MyaCynth holds 30 per cent of the shares of EMTS BV and EMTS BV, holds 99.9 per cent of the shares of EMTS and that EMTS’ syndicated loan from the 2nd to 4th defendant’s and was granted without the requisite statutory approval of the CBN, and can, therefore, not be enforced through the sale of EMTS’ shares and assets by the 2nd to the 14th defendants.

 

Spectrum also claimed that its investments in EMTS would be lost if 15th to 17th defendants were allowed to effect the sale of EMTS.

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Home Lottery Fetes Winners with Mouth-watering Prizes

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Winners have emerged in the “win-a-home-today”, an initiative of the Home Lottery Limited.

In a well-attended event at De Santos Hotels in Lagos, the audience comprising bettors and would-be bettors, organisers, regulators – Consumer Protection Council of Nigeria, Nigeria Lottery Commission, and Lagos State Lottery Board – and members of the press, witnessed a live electronic raffle draw which saw six winners emerging.

The grand prize of a three-bedroom bungalow was won by Ticket Number 1529564392946 while Two Category A prizes of a 32-inch TV went to Ticket Numbers 1528378751686 and 1533624661389 respectively.

Three Category B prizes of a 1.2KV generator went to Ticket Number 152880223234 and Ticket Number 1528126343860 while a bettor with Ticket Number 1534243547513 completed the list.

Although none of the winners were in the audience, they were called on phone and placed on speaker to the hearing of all present. In an April Fools season, it wasn’t a surprise that skepticism got the better of the winners.

“Are you sure that this is not a prank?” Joy, the star prize winner said when informed of her winning entry.

However, Oladayo Oyelaja, the project lead of Dreamview Enterprises a partner of Home Lottery Limited, doused her fears.

“You are on phone with a live audience and they are interested in knowing you are real and the winner of the house,” he said.

“It is not a Fool’s Day prank. Congratulations.”

Now in a joyous mood, albeit with a little doubt, the lucky winner continued: “I bought the ticket last year and have even forgotten about it. You have to send me a mail and until the key of the house is handed over to me I won’t believe you.”

But Nkiru Onusili, a deputy director and coordinator of National Lottery Regulatory Commission, was full of conviction.

“You know that anything lottery requires transparency so the commission went for inspection to ensure everything was in place. And today we came to witness the event and so far, so good. We are quite impressed. The process was free and fair,” she said.

“But our work won’t end here. We shall go further to ensure that the winners get their prizes.

“After that, we have what we call winners’ verification. It is a follow-up exercise. After presenting the house and other gift items to the winners, we make sure the organisers don’t go and take back from them.”

Home Lottery Limited offers Lagosians the opportunity to own a home in a most accessible and affordable way by providing hundreds of homes annually through a credible, sustainable and trusted lottery scheme properties in Lagos developing to all over Nigeria.

The presentation of the prizes won takes place on Tuesday, April 16, 2019 at Home Lottery Limited’s corporate head office, Block 113,plot 32A, Jay Jay Oladimeji street off Freedom Way Ikate roundabout Lekki Phase 1.

The next draw comes up in July 2019. To participate, send an SMS ‘home’ to 718 on an MTN network only.

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