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FG Changes Ministry of Communications to Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy

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The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved the renaming of the Federal Ministry of Communications as Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy.

Isa Pantami, Minister of Communications, disclosed this while briefing State House correspondents after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He said the digital economy had become a global trend and was making a meaningful contribution to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

“I am here to convey the message to Nigerians that the Federal Ministry of Communications which I supervise has been renamed and re-designated as the Federal Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy; so that the amendment is that digital economy should be added to the name.

“We came up with the proposal knowing that digital economy today is about to dominate the world and even in Nigeria if you look at it critically, the contribution of ICT to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is increasing by the day.

“ If you look at the second quarter of 2019, you will find out that oil and gas contributed 8.82 per cent to our GDP while non-oil sector collectively contributed 91.18 per cent while ICT contributed 13.85 per cent to our GDP.

“So, even the contribution of oil and gas as only 8.82 while ICT 13.85 per cent. “Now, the global practice is that nations are moving into the digital economy and we felt leaving digital economy as just a peripheral in our country will not be for our economy particularly in order to give more priority to the priorities of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

“There is a need for us to have a ministry that will supervise the development and implementation of the digital economy in Nigeria; most importantly, with regard to our economic recovery and growth plan,’’

Pantami said that in order to be in alignment with the global best practice, many nations in the world were coming up with new ministries as ministries of the digital economy.

He said that in the European Union, a commissioner had been assigned with the mandate of the digital economy while Scotland has also appointed a minister of the digital economy. The minister said more so, that Thailand had a minister of the digital economy while in Africa, Burkina Faso had also appointed a minister of the digital economy.

He said that the move was to make sure that the digital economy was not a peripheral aspect of the Nigerian economy but a central one.

“In Nigeria, looking at the contributions of ICT and secondly, looking at how our population, most importantly, youths are addicted to ICT; they are naturally inclined to ICT; so, I feel it is very important.

“No one will argue with me that if you look at the richest people today in the world, they come from that aspect of the digital economy.

“For example, Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com; he came up with that idea of Amazon in 1994; up to 2003, he couldn’t get any profit; by 2004, he got his first profit and by 2017, 2018, 2019 constantly, he became the richest person in the world.

“What he did only significantly was to come up with that platform of Amazon.com; he doesn’t own any shop where you go and buy property but one that will provide that digital platform so that you will be able to connect potential buyers and potential buyers and potential sellers and that platform alone catapulted him to be the richest person in the world.’’

He said that Nigeria had advantages in terms of population and resources; therefore, should harness the digital economy as a global trend to improve its economy.


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Magu, Suspended EFCC Boss Says He Never Received Bribe all His Life

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Ibrahim Magu, suspended acting chairman, Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), on Wednesday said he has never received bribe all his life.

Magu, Suspended EFCC Boss Says He Never Received Bribe all His Life

brahim Magu, suspended chairman, EFCC

Magu was testifying before the Justice Ayo Salami panel probing allegations of corruption against him.

The suspended EFCC boss said anyone who claim he had ever given him bribe should come forward before the panel to testify against him.

He was responding to allegations that he allowed a suspect Hima Aboubakar, a Nigerien National to escape from justice.

The suspended EFCC boss had opened his defense on Monday to clear corruption allegations against him.

The probe panel has allowed him to have only two lawyers represent him at a time.

On Monday & Tuesday, he was represented by Wahab Shittu and Aliyu Lemu.

In yesterday’s proceedings, he was represented by Shittu and Tosin Ojaomo.


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“TIME 100” Lists Tony Elumelu among 100 Most Influential People in the World 2020

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TIME has named Tony O. Elumelu, one of Africa’s leading investors and philanthropists, in the 2020 TIME100, the annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world.

“TIME 100” Lists Tony Elumelu among 100 Most Influential People in the World 2020

The list, now in its seventeenth year, recognises the activism, innovation, and achievement of the world’s most influential individuals.

Mr Elumelu, who is one of only four Africans on the 2020 list, is recognised for his track record of business turnaround and value creation, and economic empowerment of young Africans.

Tony Elumelu is the founder and chairman of Heirs Holdings, his family owned investment company, committed to improving lives and transforming Africa, through long-term investments in strategic sectors of the African economy, including financial services, hospitality, power, energy and healthcare.

He is the Chairman of top pan-African financial services group, the United Bank for Africa (UBA), which operates in 20 countries in Africa, the United Kingdom, France, and is the only African bank with a commercial deposit taking licence in the United States.

The bank provides corporate, commercial, SME and consumer banking services to more than 21 million customers globally.

Elumelu also chairs Nigeria’s largest quoted conglomerate, Transcorp, whose subsidiaries include Transcorp Power, one of the leading generators of electricity in Nigeria and Transcorp Hotels Plc, Nigeria’s foremost hospitality brand.

Mr Elumelu is the most prominent champion of entrepreneurship in Africa. In 2010, he created The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF), the philanthropy empowering a new generation of African entrepreneurs, catalysing economic growth, driving poverty eradication and ensuring job creation across all 54 African countries.

Since inception, the Foundation has funded just under 10,000 entrepreneurs and created a digital ecosystem of over one million as part of its ten year, US$100m commitment through the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme.

Self-funded, the Foundation is increasingly sharing its unique ability to identify, train, mentor and fund young entrepreneurs across Africa, with institutions such as the UNDP, the ICRC and leading European development agencies.

Tony Elumelu Named In “TIME 100” List Of 100 Most Influential People In The World 2020Heirs Holdings, which serves as a corporate role model for African businesses, and the Tony Elumelu Foundation will both celebrate 10 years of impact in November.

Their mission continues to be inspired by Mr Elumelu’s economic philosophy of Africapitalism, which positions the private sector, and most importantly entrepreneurs, as the catalyst for the social and economic development of the continent.


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HP, AU Commission Sign MoU to Collaborate for Development of Entrepreneurial Skills in Africa

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HP Inc. in partnership with the African Union Commission (AUC) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to foster entrepreneurial learning in Africa.

The aim of the MoU is to further cement the collaboration between these two parties in building entrepreneurial skills across the continent and to leverage HP Foundation’s Learning Initiative for Entrepreneurs (HP LIFE).

HP LIFE provides people in the region with access to 32 free, online courses in seven languages to build key business competencies as set out in the AGENDA 2063.

AGENDA 2063 is Africa’s blueprint and master plan for transforming Africa into the global powerhouse of the future.

It is the continent’s strategic framework that aims to deliver on its goal for inclusive and sustainable development and is a concrete manifestation of the pan-African drive for unity, self-determination, freedom, progress, and collective prosperity.

HP Inc. and the AUC have agreed to exchange information and material on enhancing quality education for learners and entrepreneurs in Africa, organize symposiums and conferences on education and skills development initiatives, leverage the online platform HP LIFE, which is aimed to enroll a million users between 2016 and 2025 and is part of HP’s commitment to enable better learning outcomes for 100 million people globally by 2025.

The aim of the MoU is to ensure closer collaboration and exchange of information between the parties, in a manner that creates synergies in Youth Skills Development, Academic Exchanges, and Research in Africa.

“HP is driving access to quality education globally to enable anyone and everyone to build skills to compete in the digital economy,” said Issam Essadiqi, Interim Managing Director, HP Africa. “Making education more accessible and effective helps people get better jobs, launch small businesses, and create opportunities for their families and communities.

“HP believes technology can be the great equalizer in education and is using it to enable students to get access to quality education in the classroom and beyond.”

The AU Commissioner for Human Resource, Science and Technology H.E Prof. Sarah Anyang Agbor said, “The partnership with HP will accelerate our education response to Covid-19 and beyond to ensure accessible and continued learning for African youth.

The African Union’s education agenda, which has a focus on digital learning is well complemented by the opportunities that the work with HP will bring about for African youth.

In line with prioritizing distance learning, the partnership will support individuals and institutions of learning to provide the requisite expertise and opportunities.”

HP LIFE was first offered through hundreds of local training centers in countries such as Nigeria, Tunisia, South Africa, Uganda, and Kenya, to help people learn the skills to start or grow a business or improve their employment prospects.

In 2012, HP LIFE expanded to an online platform. Since 2016, over 116,000 men and women across Africa have already received HP LIFE training. 82% of women who took part in an HP LIFE survey said that participating in the programme had increased their confidence in their future

Today, technology can support new styles of learning. PCs and tools designed for education can offer students flexibility of time, place, and pace of learning, whether in or out of the classroom, or in a blend of environments.

HP and the AUC’s joint efforts have the potential to uplift access of education and opportunities for career work and economic growth, and this collaboration has the potential to make lifelong learning a reality.


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