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Fashola Commissions Recreation Centre

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Babatunde Fashola (SAN), Lagos State governor last Wednesday handed over a sports recreation centre constructed by the Council of Wives of Lagos State Officials (COWLSO) at Oworonshoki, Kosofe local government area of Lagos State with a plea to all the 57 local governments in the state to adopt it as a model.
Governor Fashola who spoke at the handing over ceremony which took place at Oworonshoki added that each of the 57 local governments and Local Council Development Areas should provide two of such sports centre in their domain.
Fashola explained that just as the 57 Local Councils and Development areas have recently provided 2 patrol vans each to the Police, adopting same strategy with the sports facilities would ensure a commitment to a new beginning in sports development and provide Lagos with 114 sports centres.
 “This park symbolizes for me a new beginning being championed by COWLSO. We must follow that new beginning. As a government, we will not only follow, but will sometimes lead because we have more resources. We will build more across Lagos”, he added.
Governor Fashola also said all local government areas, states and the federal government must commit to investing in public sports centres not only to give the poor and underprivileged a chance to excel in sports but because they are also theatres of rehearsals.
The governor emphasized that sports is a major tool to expand the economy, create jobs and fight unemployment, adding however that excellence in sports can only come from thousands of hours of practice and preparations.
He added that the exploits of Brazil in sports especially football is not an accident, but due to the prevalence of small sports parks all over the country which affords everyone the opportunity to train and practice.
Governor Fashola reminded the residents of the area that the facility is a sports facility meant for the usage of the children and which must not be put to other uses, charging the residents to always forward complaints about improper usage of the facility to his office if they occur.
He said not only the COWLSO must be involved in the management of the sports centre, but the royal fathers, landlords, CDAs and other members of the landlords association must have representatives that would ensure that it is put to proper use.
Governor Fashola reminded many of the youth who were at the event that even if they decide to embrace sports, it must be solidified by sound education, advising that sole reliance on sports is not the best because sporting prowess is determined by age.
He added that after sports, it is whatever education or trade which a sportsman has proficiency in that he will fall back on, adding: “We must ensure that this facility is used by only children of school age or those learning a trade in developing their sporting prowess”.
The governor also personally donated one generator each to the two new recreation centres as his contribution to the forthcoming National Women Conference.
Speaking earlier, Mrs Abimbola Fashola, wife of the governor and chairman of COWLSO said the Oworonshoki playing ground is one of the dividends of the 2007 and 2008 National Women conference.
She revealed that the new centre is equipped with a football field, a grandstand, a basketball court, a gym, a children’s playing arena, a sitting area for the elderly and a hall.
Mrs Fashola informed that the facility has also been secured with a perimeter fence , a gate and a gate house for the security personnel.
In his address of welcome, Prince Ademuyiwa Adedeji , chairman , Kosofe Local Government, promised that the local government would continue to do all it can within the limited available resources to better the lot of the people.

 


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AfDB Appoints Dr Babatunde Samson Omotosho as Director of Statistics Department

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African Development Bank has appointed Dr Babatunde Samson Omotosho, an economist and statistician, as Director of the Statistics Department, effective June 16, 2024.

Dr Babatunde Samson Omotosho

Dr Omotosho, a Nigerian national, has more than 21 years experience in developing data strategies to align with the strategic objectives of organisations. He also brings expertise in data compilation, data analytics, macroeconomic research, and policy analysis.

Omotosho previously served as Director of Research and Statistics at the West African Monetary Agency (WAMA) in Sierra Leone, where he was seconded from the Central Bank of Nigeria. At WAMA, he provided advice on monetary and economic integration within the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

Prior to that he held various positions within the Statistics and Research Departments of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

As an Assistant Director in the Statistics Department, he led the data analytics team and managed the Central Bank’s strategic initiatives on big data and data analytics. He oversaw projects aimed at enhancing data analytics capabilities for policymaking, automating surveys and statistical systems, improving data sharing infrastructure and developing social media listening tools. His leadership fostered a culture of data analytics within the Central Bank, driving innovation and efficiency in operational and policy processes.

Dr Omotosho holds a PhD in Economics from the University of Glasgow, United Kingdom (2021); a master’s degree in Applied Statistics and Datamining from the University of St Andrews, United Kingdom (2011); a master’s degree in Economics from the University of Benin, Nigeria (2008); and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Ilorin, Nigeria (2000).

He has contributed extensively to academic literature, with publications in reputable journals, including the Journal of Economic Dynamics & Control, Journal of International Money & Finance, Macroeconomic & Finance in Emerging Market Economies, and the Central Bank of Nigeria Journal of Applied Statistics. His research covers big data, econometrics, monetary and fiscal policy interactions, business cycle drivers, and the macroeconomic implications of resource shocks for small open, emerging economies.

Omotosho is a member of the Nigerian Statistical Association, the International Association for Official Statistics, and the Royal Statistical Society.

Commenting on his appointment, he said, “I am grateful to President Adesina for this appointment, and I am excited about the opportunity to contribute to the continued success and growth of the African Development Bank Group, an institution that plays such a pivotal role in the economic and social development of our beloved continent, Africa. I am fully committed to fulfilling the responsibilities of the position while collaborating effectively with the Bank’s senior leadership team, colleagues, and other strategic partners.”

Dr Akinwumi A. Adesina, President of the African Development Bank Group, commented: “I am pleased to appoint Dr Babatunde Samson Omotosho, a respected statistician, as Director of the Statistics Department. Dr Omotosho brings to this role an impressive track record in statistics, economics, and data analytics. He will support the Bank in building a robust data ecosystem to achieve our strategic objectives and sustain our long-term development goals.”


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ATII Awards Scholarship to Students

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A knowledge transfer and technology innovation hub, African Technology and Innovation Institutes (ATII) has awarded scholarships to ten pupils from Bridge International Academy, Lagos.

Through its Junior Scholars Program in partnership with Lumina Educational and Empowerment Foundation (Lumina), the scholarship will meet the educational needs of the benefitting pupils through their primary education, which is extendable to their university education.

The Junior Scholars Program is an offshoot of  ATII’s  Innovation, Leaders, Fellowship and Scholars Program that aims to empower and cater to the welfare of students aged 3-12 years from underprivileged and low-income communities by partnering with other organisations to provide scholarships for these rough diamonds.

In addition to the scholarship, ATII also provides STEM-based back-to-school kits and other Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) materials to spark their desire for education and to contribute to their communities in STEM-related fields.

In her congratulatory message, the Founder of ATII,  Prof. Rose-Margaret Ekeng-Itua represented by Mr Sunday Awolowo, ATII’s Programs Manager, praised the students for their “outstanding academic excellence” and their “resolve to continue to improve in their academic pursuits, especially in the STEM fields.”

“We hope that the scholarships will continue to encourage you to do great work to pursue STEM. We hope one day in the future you all will be inspired to be an Engineer, a technologist, a mathematician or scientist,” Prof. Ekeng-Itua said.

The ATII Junior Scholars Program is designed to encourage and support students who are interested in pursuing careers in these fields.

Mrs Ezinne Tochie-Asogwa, Manager of Academics at Bridge International Academy, expressed her appreciation to ATII for the generous gesture.

“On behalf of the management and staff of Bridge International Academy, we appreciate the kind gesture of ATII.

ATII is passionate about the next generation of leaders and individuals who will change the world, pursuing its mission to promote African and Indigenous Technologies, while supporting human capital development in alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

The ATII scholarships will provide financial assistance to the students as they continue their education in STEM fields. The program will also provide mentorship and support from ATII professionals.

 


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CBN, FintechNGR Chart the Way Forward to Enhance Nigeria’s Fintech Ecosystem

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In light of recent developments aimed at strengthening Nigeria’s fintech sector, Ade Bajomo, President of FintechNGR, led a team from the Association’s Governing Council in an engagement with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to chart the way forward.

Receiving the team at the CBN headquarters in Abuja, Philip Ikeazor, Deputy Governor, Financial System Stability, commended FintechNGR’s active advocacy efforts that have significantly improved the fintech ecosystem.

The Central Bank emphasized the need for the Association to work closely with stakeholders to operate within regulatory provisions, facilitate compliance, and establish robust risk management frameworks and governance structures.

Mr. Ikeazor stated, “The Central Bank understands the critical roles of fintechs in driving financial inclusion to the last mile. Our efforts are geared towards helping fintechs become more attractive to investors and achieve greater success.”

During the meeting, Ade Bajomo noted that while stakeholders strive to comply with regulatory requirements, they sometimes face challenges beyond their control.

“The common understanding within our ecosystem is that compliance makes the environment safer for all to innovate, scale, and collaborate. FintechNGR will ensure the co-creation of a support structure with the CBN to enhance compliance.”

Some of the initiatives the regulators plan to pursue with the ecosystem include making the 2024 Nigeria Fintech Week more impactful, enriching the activities of the Regulators Forum, organizing fintech learning series for various stakeholders, and exploring self-regulation status for FintechNGR to foster closer relationships with regulators.

FintechNGR remains committed to working with all regulators to better position the ecosystem to be more inclusive and impactful.

 


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