Following the public outrage that heralded last week’s appointment of Oluseun Onigbinde as a Technical Adviser to the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, the data analyst and Co-founder of BudgIT just announced that he is turning down the offer.
Making the announcement via Medium, Onigbinde said that his decision to step down came after he thought long and hard about the development and people’s reactions.
With my belief that trust is important a success and that humans are just replaceable stewards, here is my update.
Thank you and God bless.
“AN UPDATE ON MY RECENT APPOINTMENT” by Oluseun Onigbinde https://t.co/PzdTa6xXcA
— Olúseun Onígbińdé (@seunonigbinde) September 16, 2019
“Upon further reflections on the furore that has been generated by my new role as the Technical Adviser to the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, I humbly resign the appointment.”
Onigbinde also stated that the media coverage of the appointment last week “created a complex narrative”. This, he believes, would have made it difficult for him to function optimally in the new role.
He then expressed his gratitude for having been considered for the important role, even as he appreciated all those who reached out to him with congratulatory messages following the appointment.
Note that Onigbinde’s resignation as the Technical Adviser to the Ministry is coming barely days after the announcement was made public. And despite that unexpected turn of events, he said he remains committed to the important process of nation-building.
“My sincere interest is to see a Nigeria that grows and optimises resources for the benefits of all Nigerians.
“My loyalty to the good cause of our nation, Nigeria compelled me to accept the call to provide technical skills and this experience has more than strengthened it.”
Surprisingly, Onigbinde also expressed a rare public support for the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration. According to him, he will use his capacity as the Director of BudgIT to provide support to the Federal Government when need be.
BudgIT, on its own, will continue “to build civic awareness on the right of every Nigerian to know how public resources are managed.”
Recall that Nairametrics reported about the public outrage that met Onigbinde’s appointment last week. Many Nigerians were surprised that he even accepted the job in the first place, fearing that BudeIT would become “compromised” following the development. Some others even called him a hypocrite for accepting to work for the same government he has been so critical of over the years.
In the meantime, the man is trending again on Twitter, just like he did last week Friday. This time, Nigerians’ have mixed reactions to the news of Onigbinde’s surprise resignation. Twitter user, Demola Aliyu Adeniran believes he should be applauded for finally doing the right thing. Ayo Sogunro agrees.
Please applaud Seun Onigbinde for providing a dignified closure to what looked like a misadventure of futuristic proportions, through resignation.
I have wondered how he would navigate the oddity of drinking from the same river he openly defecated into for years.
— Demola Aliyu Adeniran (@Demurleigh) September 16, 2019
From my own point of view, Seun has done the right thing here.
Activists must not allow the hope of doing good for the country blind them to the realities of working under a deliberately bad govt.
“AN UPDATE ON MY RECENT APPOINTMENT” by Seun Onigbinde https://t.co/h4hGhl367H
— Ayo Sogunro – #Transformist (@ayosogunro) September 16, 2019
But Dipo Awojide does not quite agree. Instead, he believes Nigeria just missed an important opportunity of having one of its best brains serve the country.
We need the best of the best in government. We need our best brains/clever minds to help Ministers, Senators and even the President get the work of governance done. Its a shame that we have lost 2 brilliant guys over Twitter madness. First it was Olu Onemola, now Seun Onigbinde.
— Dr. Dípò Awójídé (@OgbeniDipo) September 16, 2019
Meanwhile, one Omo Baba Oke is screaming “shame” on Onigbinde for choosing to settle for the role of the critic instead of that of a change maker.
Shame on Seun Onigbinde . So he chose to settle as a critic rather than be a change maker…. all because of what people will say? Grabbing the appointment initially already prove who he really was, but dropping the appointment shows how worse he can be. Shame!!! pic.twitter.com/jG9CVg9Q0G
— Arc. Omo Baba Òkè (@lord_haywire07) September 16, 2019
Tiktok’s In-App revenue surges amid lockdown
ByteDance Ltd’s brainchild, TikTok, together with Douyin ranking tops globally on mobile apps with the highest revenue generated for the month of April.
The meme-making business has proven to be worth all the fuss, with TikTok, as well as its Chinese twin app, Douyin, ranking tops globally on mobile apps with the highest revenue generated for the month of April.
Sensor Tower, notes that just in the first quarter of this year, ByteDance Ltd’s brainchild, TikTok, together with Douyin which caters to the Chinese market, generated 315 million downloads globally, from the 187 million it had just a year earlier.
The ranking, which was based on their in-app purchases, reveal a tenfold increase, as the companies garnered a whopping $78 million in revenue. The Chinese market is said to have contributed 86.6% of Douyin’s revenue, followed by the U.S market which contributed 8.2%.
This places them ahead of older names like Netflix & YouTube. As opposed to using subscriptions like these established brands, TikTok and Douyin allow users to purchase virtual currency to spend on their favorite content creators.
(READ MORE: Does YouTube stand a chance against TikTok?)
While ByteDance is exploring the world of online commerce, it continues to rely on advertising as its primary income source. However, Emarketer projects that more than 75 million US social network users will make at least one purchase from a social channel in the year 2020.
Sanwo-Olu to virtually inaugurate projects as he presents scorecard of first year in office
Some of the projects to be commissioned will be done virtually, while a few will be done on-site.
Lagos state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, will virtually inaugurate housing, education, and road projects on May 29, as part of activities to mark his first year in office.
According to a report by NAN, the projects are part of the government’s efforts to renew infrastructure in critical sectors and to make the commercial centre a smart city.
Some of the projects to be commissioned will be done virtually, while a few will be done on-site.
Lagos state Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Gbenga Omotoso, listed some of the projects in an official statement. He said:
”In the education sector, Sanwo-Olu will conduct virtual inauguration of completed classroom blocks in Maya Secondary School, Ikorodu; Eva Adelaja Junior School, Bariga; and Saviour Primary School, Ifako-Ijaiye, among others.
“Virtual inauguration of completed works such as the Concrete Jetty in Baiyeku, Ikorodu, Aradagun-Ajido- Epeme Road in Badagry, and the Maryland Signalisation project also form part of the itinerary to commemorate the anniversary.”
Omotoso also stated that the Governor would inaugurate the 360-unit Lagos Homes in Ikorodu, and then visit Igbogbo Baiyeku IIB Estate, Lekki, and the Courtland Villas on Femi Okunnu Estate during the week.
Plans for celebrating Children’s Day
In a related development, Governor Sanwo-Olu will deliver an address on Wednesday May 27 to mark the children’s day celebration, and the 53rd anniversary of Lagos state.
Omotoso, however, noted that all celebrations would be kept on the low in reflection of the current challenges and realities of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Presenting one-year scorecards
The activities for the week are expected to begin with press briefings at J.J.T Park in Alausa on May 27, where members of the State Executive Council will present their scorecards in line with the six pillars of the state’s T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda.
According to the information commissioner, there will be two sessions of press briefings daily from May 27 to June 3, as the Governor considers it expedient to render a stewardship account of the last one year.
“Three special publications highlighting the achievements of the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration and testimonies of beneficiaries of various initiatives of the government are slated for presentation to the public by the governor and his Deputy, Dr Obafemi Hamzat,” he added.
Central banks digital currencies pose a threat against the U.S dollar
In general, digital currencies could weaken the power of U.S. sanctions and the ability of the U.S. Treasury to watch illicit financial flows.
A new report by America’s biggest bank, JP Morgan Chase, said the U.S dollar is being faced with a major threat as many central banks’ digital currencies continue to gain traction.
Analysts, including Josh Younger, the head of U.S. interest-rate derivatives strategy and Michael Feroli, the chief U.S. economist, wrote in a report saying this:
“There is no country with more to lose from the disruptive potential of digital currency than the United States.
“This revolves primarily around U.S. dollar hegemony. Issuing the global reserve currency and the medium of exchange for international trade in commodities, goods, and services convey immense advantages.”
Aditi Kumar and Eric Rosenbach also recently penned an opinion piece for Foreign Affairs in which they noted that “Just recently, America’s arch-rival China became the first major economy to carry a real test of a national digital currency.”
In general, electronic currencies could weaken the power of U.S. sanctions and the ability of the U.S. Treasury to watch illicit financial flows. A digital Chinese currency (yuan) combined with China’s developed electronic payment systems may give China more future influence than it ever bargained for.
What Nigerians should know about Digital currencies
A digital currency is a cash balance recorded electronically on a store value card or other physical devices, which could someday replace the physical notes of the naira, for instance.
Digital currencies can be decentralized, that is where the control over the cash supply can come from diverse sources. Digital currencies can also be centralized, where there is a midway point of control over cash supply, just like the way central banks work.
Although JP Morgan does not see the U.S dollar being overthrown as the world’s reserve currency anytime soon, experts warned that the U.S dollar dominance could weaken. This is because its processing trade settlement and the SWIFT system could make it more vulnerable.
The American bank continued by saying:
“Offering a cross-border payment solution built on top of a digital dollar would, particularly if designed to be minimally disruptive to the structure of the domestic financial system, be a very modest investment to protect a key means to project power in the global economy,
“For high-income countries and the U.S. in particular, digital currency is an exercise in geopolitical risk management.”
Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said months ago that the Federal Reserve was taking a critical view on the issues regarding a digital currency.