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Business News

FBNQuest appointed co-financial advisor to DMO

N100 billion Sukuk II offer to consolidate gains of Sukuk I

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FirstBank

Following the successful appointment of the first Federal Government of Nigeria Sukuk Bond in 2017, FBNQuest Merchant Bank Limited has been appointed as the co-financial adviser to the Debt Management Office (DMO) on the issuance of the second N100 billion Sukuk offer.

This development was disclosed in a statement by the firm. According to the statement, the Sukuk II offer was aimed at consolidating on the gains of the Sukuk I by injecting an additional N100 billion, which would be directed at funding more infrastructure development projects across the country.

The statement also has it that the Sukuk further sought to diversify the Federal Government’s source of funding, deepening the market for domestic securities and improve financial inclusion, particularly for ethical investors.

The Sukuk II offer will open to the public from December 6 to 17, 2018.

The statement read in part:

“The first sovereign Sukuk bond was debuted by the FGN in September 2017, with FBNQuest Merchant Bank selling over 65 per cent of the total subscriptions to both institutional and retail investors.

“A major benefit of the Sukuk II is its low-risk investment profile as the FGN is fully responsible for the payment of investors’ rental income bi-annually and the repayment of the principal at maturity.”

The statement added that the rental income would be tax-free to encourage investment among the financially excluded as well as a new class of ethically-minded investors.

It added that the Sukuk II was supported by the full faith and credit of the Federal Government and offered subscribers an opportunity to contribute to the development of road infrastructure in Nigeria.

Nairametrics had reported that the DMO on behalf of the Federal Government, opened an offer for subscription of a N100 billion Sukuk bond.

What you should know about Sukuk bonds

Sukuk is derived from the word Sakk, which can be translated to mean legal instrument, deed, and cheque. Sakk can also mean to strike a deal on a paper document.

The origin of Sukuk dates back to 7th century AD, where the first Sukuk transaction took place in Damascus, Syria in the Great Mosque of Damascus (Umayyad Mosque).

Due to the fact that Islam prohibits usury – collecting interest from your loans – interest based bonds are banned in Muslim nations.

Famuyiwa Damilare is a trained journalist. He holds a Higher National Diploma (HND) in Mass Communication at the prestigious Nigerian Institute of Journalism (NIJ).Damilare is an innovative and transformational leader with broad-based expertise in journalism and media practice at large. He has explored his proven ability in the areas of reporting, curating and generating contents, creatively establishing social media engagements, and mobile editing of videos. It is safe to say he’s a multimedia journalist.

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Business News

Labour set for showdown with FG, rejects plan to reduce salaries

The NLC president demanded an increase in the remunerations and allowances of Nigerian workers.

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Minimum wage, NLC, Looting by former governors blocks excuses for new minimum wage 

The Organised Labour appears set for a showdown with the Federal Government as they have condemned and rejected the government’s plan to cut down salaries of Nigerian workers.

This follows the recent statement credited to the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, in which she revealed the Federal Government’s plan to reduce the cost of governance by cutting down workers’ salaries.

This disclosure was contained in a statement issued by the President of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Ayuba Waba, on Wednesday in Abuja, in which he expressed shock and noted that the plan was tantamount to a mass suicide wish for Nigerian workers.

What the NLC President is saying

Waba in his statement said, “The minister also allegedly directed the National Salaries, Incomes and Wages Commission (NSIWC), to immediately review the salaries of civil servants as well as the number of federal agencies in the country.

It is most unthinkable that the government would be contemplating to unilaterally slash the salaries of Nigerian workers at this time.

He added that “The question to ask is which salary is the government planning to slash? It certainly cannot be the meager national minimum wage of N30, 000, which right now cannot even buy a bag of rice.”

The NLC President said that he believed the proposed salary slash was certainly not targeted at the minimum wage and consequential adjustment in salaries that some state governors were still dragging their feet to pay.

He said that the multiple devaluations of the Naira in a short time, and the prevailing high inflation rate in Nigeria had negatively impacted on the salaries earned by Nigerian workers across the board.

He said, “Nigerian workers are only surviving by hair’s breadth. Indeed, Nigerian workers are miracles strutting on two legs.

“It is, therefore, extremely horrendous for a minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to pronounce salary slash for Nigerian workers currently. This call for salary slash by Mrs Zainab Ahmed is tantamount to a “mass suicide” wish, for Nigerian workers.”

While demanding an immediate retraction and apology by the Minister of Finance, the NLC president, however, said that if there was any salary that needed serious slashing, it was the humongous remuneration and allowances pocketed by political office holders in Nigeria, who did extraordinarily little but collected so much.

Wabba said, “Workers generate surplus value and revenue for the government. We do not constitute any unnecessary cost or burden to governance. It is also important to make the point that salaries are products of contracts governed by laws. They cannot be unilaterally adjusted.”

This move is not only at great odds with global best responses to the COVID-19 pandemic but also in violation of relevant ILO Conventions and Declarations on Wages and Decent Work. We urge the government as a social partner to quickly respond to the demands by Labour for an upward review of salaries of all Nigerian workers.

Nigerian workers have shown sufficient understanding with the government through the tough patches of the pandemic. Now, Nigerian workers demand reciprocity of our understanding. Nigerian workers demand an increase in their remunerations and allowances.”

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Book launch: Built for the Storm by Bridget Oyefeso Odusami

‘Built for the storm’ is a must-have manual for those experiencing any kind of life adversity.

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Bridget Oyefeso Odusami launches new book, Built for the Storm. In this book, the author takes us on a journey through the process of pain and healing. Using real-life experiences, she talks about the scars that remain afterwards, and how to live with these scars.

What first catches your attention is the title of the book. It emphasises the importance of a name – her name, “Bridget” is an Irish name which means the “Enduring one” – a recurring theme in her story. Bridget was named strong and so was her book. The book takes us through how to change your point of view when life seems hopeless and figure out what you can do to make everything better and find happiness.

‘Built for the storm’ is the ultimate game-changer. Step-by-step, readers are empowered and encouraged so that you can turn any setback into a major comeback while understanding that in life, there are times, seasons and reasons.

In this inspirational, but practical self-help book for women and men, Bridget Oyefeso-Odusami talks at length about her husband’s illness and how she copes. Bridget talks about several issues that pop up when the unexpected happens. She talks about her realisation that in caring for the sick, she herself needs help, needs healing to crawl back to life; to show up despite it all.

Bridget is also conscious of the fact that other ears are tuned to her musings and are likely to glean a few truths from her journey; so she uses anecdotes, analogies, even Bible verses and stories to season her musings. She uses her scars and their reminders to tell us about life, about love, about being a wife, a mother, a career woman and one determined to be herself regardless of her circumstances.

Built for the storm is a must-have manual for those experiencing any kind of life adversity. The book tells the story of how love is sweet but can be painful; love forgives, love keeps “no records of wrongs” but more importantly, love grows and when it is rooted in abiding faith, it blossoms like a rose among thorns.

Built for the storm comes to us during a time of deep unrest, a time when our empathy for others is so needed to guide the choices we will make. This book will open hearts. It teaches readers how to shift their mindset and do the internal work to discover the divine purpose of obstacles and how to position them to become their stepping stool for success. You can overcome any adversity and land back on top! There is a reason that you are still alive. You were built for the storm.

Built for the Storm is a searing and pain-filled musing on what can happen when life throws you a curveball. It is a simplified workbook and a sobering reminder that our life can seem no more than a lottery and winning or losing is often up to chance and fate and God, if you believe in him. And for those who believe in God, this is a book that will strengthen your faith and also try your faith beyond measure. This book will stir emotions in you that you did not realize you were capable of. This book will test your faith then make it strong.

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This book is about hurt and healing, adversity and resilience as well as grace under pressure. ‘Wound’ appears 24 times, ‘wounded’ appears 9 times while ‘wounds’ is used 9 times. Reading through, what becomes increasingly obvious is that Bridget has taken vicious blows from life and has been wounded over and over again but through prayer and faith and the kindness of friends and strangers as well as a huge support system she has healed but the scars remain.

That is a summation of the most important lesson from this sobering and beautiful book; scars can be beautiful things and we need not be ashamed of them. Built for the Storm illuminates God’s faithfulness in the life of the author as He orchestrates times and seasons amidst the storms, setting people and situations in place to help her journey towards healing and purpose. Like a line in the book says, “this isn’t where your story ends… Seasons come, seasons go but God is constant.”

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