Corporate Law Firms in Nigeria rake in billions of Naira every year in advisory services to both local and foreign clients. Their services are sought regularly from investors, fund managers, fund raisers, corporates, countries etc. looking to close out one deal or the other. A Law firm can sometimes represent two different clients on the same deal employing what they often call a “Chinese wall”.
Legal Finders Who is Who Legal a website owned by Law Business Research an independent London-based publishing group, which provides research, analysis and reports on the international legal services marketplace, released a list of 15 top Banking & Finance Lawyers in Nigeria who they considered “Leading Lights” in the country.
- Udo Udoma & Belo-Osagie has three lawyers in this chapter, including the “eminent” Yinka Edu. She specialises in advising on issues relating to the Nigerian bond market and on compliance issues and is praised for her “intelligence and creativity”. Managing partner Dan Agbor is a “true authority” on finance matters, having advised on a number of market-leading transactions including Nigeria’s earliest global depositary receipt programme. Aniekan Ukpanah co-heads the banking and finance team and boasts a “wealth of expertise” in the structuring and financing of projects in a variety of industries.
- Olaniwun Ajayi garners two inclusions this year. Tominiyi Owolabi is “one of the best lawyers in the market” and is lauded for his “technical expertise” and “business acumen”. Wolemi Esan is a “real specialist” in the financing and development of power projects. His recent experience includes advising on the US$150 million Merrill Lynch/Solar Gardens real estate financing and the US$90 million Merrill Lynch total return swap.
- Aluko & Oyebode’s Kofo Dosekun advises on a range of lending and commercial transactions as well as acting as counsel to a number of offshore lenders in relation to oil exploration and production matters. She is highly rated for her “dedication and commitment”. Clients “wouldn’t hesitate to recommend” Oghogho Makinde thanks to her “impressive” practice encompassing complex commercial transactions, restructurings and divestitures.
- At Banwo & Ighodalo “stands out” for his capabilities in the banking sector. He specialises in domestic and international financing related transactions. heads the firm’s corporate finance group and is praised for her “close attention to detail” by clients.
- Abdulai Taiwo & Co is home to the “exceptional” Alayo Ogunbiyi who is “counsel of choice” for a number of national and international clients. Ladi Taiwo is a “senior figure” in the Nigerian market, and is praised for his “incredible amount of industry knowledge”.
- At AÉLEX Lawrence Fubara Anga represents major state owned and private oil and gas production companies. He is praised for his “thorough understanding of the complexities involved in financing these transactions”.
- B Ayorinde & Co’s Bolaji Ayorinde SAN is a “fantastic help” to financial institutions thanks to his “first-class commercial and financial knowledge”.
- James Okoh at Oditah is well known for his “world-class litigation skills” and has extensive experience acting for international and domestic clients.
- Giwa-Osagie & Company’s Osayaba Giwa-Osagie is a “leading light” in the market and comes highly recommended for his wide-ranging financial litigation experience.
Reason why Airtel Nigeria credited subscribers with free airtime
Airtel Nigeria has disclosed why it credited its subscribers with N1,000 airtime.
Airtel Nigeria has disclosed that it credited its subscribers with N1,000 airtime and data as compensation for service disruptions on its network on Friday, October 16, 2020.
This was contained in messages sent by the network provider to its subscribers, informing them that the airtime and free data were compensation for service disruptions.
There had been social media reports that Airtel Nigeria was crediting its subscribers with free N1,000 airtime. While many of the subscribers did not know the reason for the unusual gesture by the network provider, they claimed it was a cyberattack by ‘Anonymous’ hackers after it had asked Airtel Nigeria subscribers to check their balance for N1,000 airtime.
Some others claimed that the free airtime was a giveaway to support the ongoing #EndSARS campaign in the country.
The message from Airtel states, “Dear customer, we apologise for the recent service disruption experienced on October 16. Normal service has been restored and your line will be credited with five minutes of on-net calls and 100MB of data both valid for one day.”
This is in line with the compensation policy of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) for the industry.
A spate of hacks claimed to have been executed by an “Anonymous” hacker group had sparked rumours of bank accounts and Pay TV hacks on social media. Even some Federal Government agencies were not spared of the alleged hack by this same group.
On Sunday when MultiChoice’s customers found that restriction had been lifted on all channels on DStv and Gotv, they attributed it to cyberattacks perpetrated by ‘Anonymous’.
However, a representative of the company said the Pay-TV company was upgrading its system and had informed its subscribers via text messages last week.
Nairametrics had earlier reported that Airtel Nigeria had denied giving out free N1,000 credit to its subscribers. This follows the claim by the telecom firm’s subscribers on Twitter of being credited with N1,000 airtime after Anonymous hacker asked them to check their balance.
#EndSARS Nigerian Rights group switch to Crypto
A Nigerian rights group strongly supporting the #EndSARS campaign has highlighted why it is accepting donations in Bitcoin.
Nigerian millennials in the past few weeks have taken to the streets in unprecedented numbers, kicking against the abuse done by a significant number of law enforcement officers, most specifically, the disbanded Special Anti-robbery Squad (SARS).
As the protest rages on, various rights groups have set up funds to provide participants, support, while they glamour for the long-overdue reforms.
Feminist Coalition, recently gave reasons why it’s now switching to crypto. The group said;
“We’re moving to only accepting donations in Bitcoin using BTC Pay. BTC Pay is a free, secure, decentralized, and censorship-resistant platform, which makes it our best option, given the past few days #EndPoliceBrutalityinNigeria. Please donate here: https://donatebtc.feministcoalition2020.com”
We're moving to only accepting donations in Bitcoin using BTC Pay. BTC Pay is a free, secure, decentralized and censorship-resistant platform, which makes it our best option, given the past few days #EndPoliceBrutalityinNigeria
Please donate here: https://t.co/FvsEKetUL9
— feministcoalition (@feminist_co) October 15, 2020
The fast-rising Nigerian rights group provides logistics, aid to Nigerians pressing for Police reforms via street protests disclosed they raised about 8 bitcoins valued at over $88,0000 and other cash donations.
— feministcoalition (@feminist_co) October 19, 2020
Why this matters
The donations are used in providing medical and legal bills for some Nigerians arrested in recent days, and most importantly to hire private security guards in protecting them against armed gangs, who of late have tried to discredit the theme of the peaceful protests.
Another critical macro making many Nigerian millennials use crypto amid protest for reforms is basically because the #EndSARS protests in principle is decentralized. There is no known centralized authority coordinating the protest, and not forgetting, the much advantage cryptos have over fiat currencies are that they are decentralized finance assets, meaning, funds can’t be controlled, blocked or disengaged by any central authority.
Also, crypto donations are very secure, and privacy concerns kept at a minimal level, on the basis you don’t disclose your personal details when making such transfers.
Nairametrics had earlier given vital insights on how for years, young Nigerians, mostly via social media, have called for the notorious Police unit to be disbanded and rogue elements in the force brought to justice. Despite repeated promises by the government, they have failed to heed to the demands, triggering a new wave of protests that have now spread across the country.
#EndSARS: FG expects increase in Covid-19 cases in the next 2 weeks
FG has warned that the ongoing #EndSARS protest may spark up a second wave of coronavirus.
The Federal Government has warned that Nigerians should expect an increase in the number of coronavirus cases across the country in the next 2 weeks.
This is due to the total disregard of the preventive measures against the virus during the ongoing nationwide #EndSARS protest which has been witnessing huge gatherings.
This disclosure was made by the Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on Covid-19, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, at the national briefing of the task force in Abuja on Monday, October 20, 2020.
He said despite the appreciable success recorded so far in the fight against COVID-19, the ongoing protest may spark up a second wave of the virus.
Mustapha said, “I can say it authoritatively that with the ongoing protest across the country, in the next two weeks the cases of COVID-19 would have increased. Each and everyone that attended the protest and did not put up any form of protection is likely going to spread the virus. When people contract the virus during the protest gathering, they will go back home and spread it.
“This is one of the reasons why we must be extremely careful when we congregate because when you gather together in such an atmosphere where people don’t wear face masks or maintain the social distance you are creating a potential opportunity for carriers to spread the virus.
“So far we have done pretty well as a country but this protest is like a setback and we must avoid a situation where we will have a resurgence. Countries that thought they have overcome are dealing with the second wave. We are extremely lucky as a nation and we should be careful of any situation that can warrant the second wave.”
He said any mass gathering that does not adhere to the non-pharmaceutical interventions that have been put in place, like wearing of face masks, social distancing, and keeping personal hygiene, becomes a super spreader event.
What it means: With the expected spike in the number of Covid-19 cases due to these protests across the country, Nigeria runs the risk of having a second wave of the coronavirus outbreak which had before now been on a decline. This could lead to the resumption of lockdown measures by the government, in order to contain the spread of the pandemic.