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Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday said his administration will leave no stone unturned and continue to deploy more technologically advanced techniques and equipment to ensure that the safety of lives and property of 22 million residents in the State is secured.

Governor Ambode, who spoke at the 11th edition of the Town Hall Meeting on Security, organised by the Lagos State Security Trust Fund (LSSTF) and held at the Banquet Hall, Lagos House in Ikeja in Alausa, said policing the State requires all and sundry to join hands with Government to ensure that the peace being enjoyed in the State is not compromised.

Alluding to the fact that criminal elements despite efforts by the Government have continue to perpetrate their nefarious activities but that his administration is prepared to do whatever it takes to make it exceedingly difficult for these criminals to succeed in their evil plots and in the event that they do, they are apprehended and brought to justice.

He therefore said that Government was investing heavily in technology equipment and strategies to aid security agencies carry out their primary function of policing the State efficiently.

“Technology can reach where man cannot. This is why your State has invested in mobile CCTV vans with control units, provision of drones, robotic bomb disposal equipment, tracker, bomb detectors, mobile scanners etc. The State has also commenced the installation of CCTV cameras and is in talks for the purchase of surveillance aircraft that carry special cameras with 3D imagery, infrared and thermal imagery which can effectively gather intelligence in all parts of the State and would assist significantly in dealing with the menace of kidnapping,” Governor Ambode said.

The Governor, however, seized the occasion to urge owners of businesses and organisations to install CCTV cameras in their premises to help expand the reach of law enforcement agents in the event of any security breach.

“We still need your continued support in providing equipment and logistics for the police and other security agencies through your contributions to the Lagos State Security Trust Fund.

“Be assured that the Lagos State Government is committed to rid our society of those that opt for crime. Our continued provision of equipment and logistics for the security agencies operating in Lagos is evident to this. Our government will also continue to provide state of the art infrastructure in order to achieve our vision of making Lagos a safe, prosperous and smart mega city,” he said.

Speaking on the plan by the Federal Government to demolish Jibowu and Costain bridges in Lagos, Governor Ambode said the development is necessary to give way for the new rail project which according to him, will be beneficial to the economy of the State and Nigeria as well.

“The Jibowu and Costain bridges will give way for the laying of tracks of a Lagos-Ibadan rail project. The demolition would give room for a track that would stretch from the old Fela Shrine to WAEC end and the track will be constructed in such a way that no vehicle can cross it,” Governor Ambode said.

Earlier, the Commissioner of Police in the State, Mr Edgal Imohimi, said the introduction of community policing and the increase in police visibility had resulted in 35 per cent decline in crime in the State.

Imohimi, however, said that despite massive contributions by the State Security Trust Fund, dearth of patrol vehicles remained a challenge.

“Many vehicles attached to the divisions have become rickety and unserviceable due to old age and over usage,” he said.

Imohimi, however, said the command would not relent in its efforts to consolidate on the achievements recorded so far, but would appreciate if additional critical fighting equipment were provided saying that it would help to improve on the successes so far recorded in the command’s fight against crime and criminality.

Also speaking, Secretary of the LSSTF, Mr Abdulrazaq Balogun, said there was need for organisations to engage in consistent and sustainable security model, expressing optimism that it will go a long way to enhance strategic planning for improved security in the State.

NEWS

DewsTech Limited, UK Launches It’s Quicoin Project

Gbemileke Ajayi

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DewsTech Limited, a London-based Fintech company announced on April 1, 2021, its launch of a unique Decentralized Payment System Called the Qui Payment System.

This payment system is uniquely built to address most issues currently experienced by existing blockchain and cryptographic systems, as it prides itself to be safe, secure, and super fast in consummating transactions.

The idea behind this technology is to create a decentralized payment system that supports Global Trade and transactions, as the world of business now desires improved turnaround time in consummating their transactions, considering the importance of time on business targets and projection.

Qui Payment Project is focused on building a new financial system that challenges the status quo and unlike most cryptocurrencies, the Qui Payment Project generates a coin named QUICOIN, which harps on safety, stability, and importantly USABILITY.

This project, aside from individuals, also ensures the corporates are taken into consideration in the design of its wallet system, which allows for corporates to trade globally and manage their wallets like they currently do with their existing payment system with allowance to identify each of their transactions for records and audit.

Upon full global adoption of this coin, businesses may bid farewell to times of third currency fluctuations and forex availability that really affect their operation and disrupt also their projections.

The Quicoin, which its Initial Coin Offer (ICO) now on offer on www.quicoin.uk/ico is considered as the new big thing in the crypto world, as for once, a cryptocurrency that suits our everyday financial needs is here, as the coin is poised on global adoption and usability by all and sundry in the global trade and transaction space.

The partnership will be fostered with global card payment systems as well as insurance companies to deepen adoption, integration, as well as protect holders of the coins from possible theft and loss of these digital assets.

This promises to be very exciting on full swing and with axillary ecosystems to complement the payment system, the global financial system is about to experience the real change expected of cryptographic and blockchain systems.

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BIG STORY

FG Enlists Interpol’s Help Over Fleeing 3,471 Dangerous Prisoners

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The Federal Government has asked the International Criminal Police Organisation to be on the alert and look out for the inmates who escaped in the recent jailbreaks in the country, including the most recent in Owerri, the Imo State capital.

It added that the Nigerian Immigration Service had also been issued an alert, noting that the data of the inmates were being compiled and would be sent to the relevant organizations in batches so as not to delay the manhunt.

A senior official with the Nigerian Correctional Service on Saturday told one of our correspondents on condition of anonymity that the number of “dangerous” inmates on the loose officially was 3,471, including those who escaped in Owerri.

The source noted that the inmates included hardened criminals, kidnappers, armed robbers, and condemned criminals awaiting execution. “Suffice it to say that the bulk of those who fled Owerri correctional center are hardened criminals,” the source added.

No fewer than 1,844 inmates escaped from the Owerri Custodial Centre on Monday when unidentified gunmen broke into the facility with the aid of explosives. The gunmen also attacked the state police headquarters, where they freed about 600 suspects in custody. The attackers torched the facilities and also vehicles on both premises.

Despite the persuasion by the Federal Government and its assurance that they would be given amnesty from fresh prosecution if they returned to the facility, the NCoS said on its website on Wednesday that it had a total of 84 inmates back in custody. It said the figure included those who did not flee during the jailbreak, those recaptured, those who voluntarily returned, and those brought back by their relations, traditional rulers and religious leaders.

Further investigations showed that about 1,780 inmates were on the loose, while only 35 inmates didn’t escape during the attack.

On Friday, NCoS authorities published on its Twitter handle the names and pictures of 36 of the fleeing inmates.

Meanwhile, following the escapees’ refusal to return to the custodial center, the NCoS said it was compiling the names and pictures of the fleeing inmates for dispatch to the NIS to prevent them from leaving the country and INTERPOL to track those who might have fled.

The NCoS spokesperson, Francis Enobore, a Controller of Corrections, said the service would seek the assistance of the two agencies in arresting the escaped inmates.

Disclosing this to journalists on Saturday, Enobore said, “We are putting the list together, we would definitely seek INTERPOL and NIS’ assistance.”

Asked how soon they planned to do it, Enobore stated, “Like the ones we are processing now, we want everything to be comprehensive so that we send them at the same time. We also realize that waiting for the list to be comprehensive before sending may also slow down the manhunt, so these batches that are coming up would be sent for local searches at motor parks and other places but everything would be uploaded to the (INTERPOL) platform.”

Investigations by one of our correspondents showed that the 3,471 inmates, who are now part of society, escaped from three custodial centers. Some of them are said to be serving jail terms for various crimes, including murder, armed robbery, and kidnapping while hundreds are facing trial for different crimes.

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BUSINESS

Figures Don’t Lie: Wema Bank Standing On Strong Financial Fundamentals — Adebise

Gbemileke Ajayi

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Wema Bank, Nigeria’s leading innovative and digital-driven financial institution has reassurance its esteemed customers and shareholders that it remains standing on strong financial fundamentals and reliable performance metrics, riding on the back of seasoned and astute leadership.

The bank gave this reassurance, through its Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Ademola Adebise, while reacting to a recent publication in the media purportedly alleging a dip in its liquidity status following the unaudited report for 2020 with the MD/CEO saying the report is only a deliberate campaign to create panic among its stakeholders using false news, and therefore should be discountenanced,

He said, “The strength and viability of financial institutions are not measured on the isolated performance of one outlier year. The said report based a lot of its false allegations on the unaudited 2020 financial year. But that was a year when COVID-19 induced a lockdown and a disruption of such magnitude that negatively impacted businesses, industries, and economies the world over.

“Wema Bank has continually exhibited not just resilience, but admirable viability over the years with a 30.95% increase in earnings recorded in just 2019. Then came 2020, and in spite of the difficulties, we succeeded in achieving impressive results in key areas such as net earnings from fees and commissions, while growing the Bank’s asset base significantly.

“That’s not all, customer credibility in the bank was also accentuated with a massive increase in customer deposits over the previous year. This is an audacious show of confidence from the customers of Wema Bank

“These performance metrics amongst others, are testament to our smart balance sheet optimization approach which will be affirmed by the time the audited and official 2020 Financial Report is released in the coming weeks “

The CEO also referenced how well the Bank’s performance in the said 2020 makes it one of the best performing financial institutions in the land.

“We won the BusinessDay award for the Best SME Bank of the Year for 2020. A recognition of our unrivaled support for small and medium scale businesses through loans, business advisory, and ease of payments and transactions.

“Also, the recently published 2020 KPMG Customer Experience Survey, showed Wema Bank making significant growth in the retail category, climbing up ten (10) places from the previous year to 2nd position, with an above industry average of 74.6% Customer Experience score. This achievement is a mark of dedication to excellent customer service and refreshing support for all our customer categories.”

The KPMG Customer Experience Survey grades banks over six universal pillars of Personalization, Integrity, Expectations, Resolution, Time & Effort, and Empathy, and Wema Bank has shown a mastery of these pillars and has been outstanding at all of them.

Furthermore, in line with the bank’s sustainability goal of developing digital solutions for societal impact, it successfully organized the second edition of Hackaholics, a radical gathering of developers, web designers, and creative thinkers to develop solutions around key themes of Education, Health, Agriculture, Fintech, Gaming & Betting.

These are intentional measures put in place to sustain an institution’s legacy of economic evolution and social inclusion.

“We are a responsible corporate citizen with empathy as a core pillar of our personality. Thus, we stood by the nation in the trying times of the COVID-19 pandemic with significant support for governments at both the federal and state levels.

“Particularly to prevent severe food shortages and align with the SDG of Zero Hunger, we supported State Governments with food palliatives donation which alleviated the conditions of over 80,000 households of the most vulnerable segments of the population.”

With all these financial and non-financial performance metrics, it is not in doubt that Wema Bank is not only standing strong, it is also among the best performing financial institutions in Nigeria, in 2020.

“I’ll take this opportunity to commend our customers for their sustained trust in us. A support that has remained a critical pillar of our stability and growth over the years, especially as we celebrate our 76th anniversary.

For us as a responsible and visionary organization, we are staying committed to our corporate purpose of making life easier and better through innovation and digital-driven lifestyle solutions for Nigerians and their businesses.” Adebise concluded.

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