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Opinion: My Bank, My Wife and The New Social Order by Joseph Edgar

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Let me first out myself. I am a former Employee of FCMB. I worked there for a bit in the securities trading arm, CSL. CSL is a legendary institution that continues to be the corner piece of the Nigerian Capital Market. I was the Head of Local Business.

One thing that attracted me to the firm was its legacy. Its founder, Chief Subomi Balogun, was a hero of sorts to young Stockbrokers like myself. He had built the institution from his bootstraps to the behemoth it is today with over 50,000 Shareholders.

My first day at work, I was taken in a ride by the then Managing Director Ladi Balogun on his way to a meeting with Aliko Dangote, and in those few minutes, he perfectly situated the values that drove the institution. Ethical standards and integrity were the words he kept repeating as he stressed the need for me to join as he attempted to reclaim market share in the Local Securities market.

I stayed with the Bank for over 15 months and having worked in several financial institutions including about four Banks and several stockbroking and Asset Management Firms, I can safely say that the ethical standards at FCMB stand shoulder high above its peers. The FCMB woman is well regarded, with access to the very top to discuss her issues. They even have the FCMB Woman Platform which seeks to build cohesion and gives the FCMB woman the much-needed push to fulfill whatever it is her career goals.

That said, the news of the alleged dalliance between the well-regarded MD Mr. Adam Nuru, and the former staff leading to the supposed siring of two kids by him while still in her marriage and ultimately leading to her husband’s passing has captured the imagination of Nigerians powerfully.

Daily the keen observer is assailed with all sorts of social media commentary, memes, and the rest on the matter. I hear an online petition has been in circulation with varied numbers being quoted as signatures asking both the FCMB and the CBN to act on the matter. A memo allegedly sent out by Group Managing Director Ladi Balogun quoting that the issue could derail the achievements’ of the Bank in the just concluded year is leaked, fueling calls for his removal.

All these have thrown up very important questions on the ethical behaviors of Bankers and its effect on the Bank’s public image and much more importantly the profitability of the Bank on the one hand and the safety of public funds in its custody on the other. It is also putting the regulator to task on the issue.

But tarry awhile. Why all this fervor on an unsigned petition innocuously posted on social media. How do we move against a Man based on a mere allegation without anybody coming out to own up to the allegations? Up until this point as I write, I have not seen a signed petition accusing the man of all of these allegations. What we are seeing so far are online petitions from people on the back of the anonymous trigger post. Should we now then hang a man based on this? Based on public push which is as is the case quite emotional.

The arbitrariness of this matter and others like this especially on social media is scary. What this portends is that if Nuru falls then anybody can fall based on any story thrown up there just by anybody. Before I am castigated, please note that I am not taking a stand as to Mr. Nuru’s innocence or not or if he breached Banks ethical rules or whatnot. All I am just saying is that there has been no concrete complaint from either Mr. Thomas accusing this man of this heinous crime or an official complaint from the Woman alleging rape, forceful sex, or any type of abuse using his power as a boss over her. We have not even seen DNA certification confirming the parentage of the children. All that is in the public domain are pictures of children who have an uncanny resemblance to Mr. Nuru. Are there sufficient factual and legal evidence to begin to push for Mr. Nurus’s head?

In the last five years, Nigerians have witnessed the growth of what some of us have called digital mobs who unlike their physical counterparts who roast with used tyres and bonfires, do there with words on social media. The arbitrariness and disregard for processes and institutionalized structures for arbitration continue to weaken the levers that hold society together pushing us closer to anarchy.

The FCMB I know has well tested and well-ordered structures for getting relief if your rights have been trampled. I have gone through it as a boss. I had lost my temper during a heated meeting and unwittingly threw a pencil at junior staff. She went through the process and I faced a Disciplinary Committee and was found guilty. The system didn’t care that as at that time I Was number 3 in the hierarchy in our subsidiary and that this lady was very near the bottom in the hierarchy, I was made to face the music. Same I am very confident would be the case if there is an official approach to this matter by any complainant even if it is me being Mr. Thomas Landlord.

The major issue here is not even Mr. Nuru and his supposed errant private member but our societies’ eagerness to throw caution and common sense into the gutters in matters like this while putting on the toga of arbitrariness in pushing these types of issues. I fear that our institutions for fear of Market share can bow to public pressure and take decisions that would further weaken them and infringe on the human rights of their people.

Please in conclusion, where is Mrs Thomas in all of these for only she can solve this problem. Her position would either indict or free Mr. Nuru, she has to answer some very salient questions – was she in an affair with Mr. Nuru while at FCMB, was she in that affair willingly or not and who truly is the father of the child, and where she has no answer to the last question, would she willingly take a DNA test on this matter.

My advice to FCMB is to stand firm by its rules, do not be pressured to take hasty decision by a fickle social media crowd who will move on to the next hot gist, while you would have destroyed not only the career of a man who is possibly innocent and in the same vein destroy the fabrics that hold your institution together. Seek the facts and base your decision on those facts.

I wish you a fruitful review of the matter. But will I close my account with FCMB ‘cos the MD has two children with a married staff? I think not. Thank you.

*Written By Joseph Edgar

BIG STORY

‘Two COVID Tests In 72 Hours’, New Protocol For Nigeria As UAE Lifts Flight Ban

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The Dubai Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management has released a new protocol directing travellers from Nigeria to undergo COVID-19 tests upon arrival at the airport in the United Arab Emirates.

Flights between both countries have been suspended since March over issues relating to the COVID-19 protocol.

In a press release on Saturday, the middle east country said the new measure is part of its efforts to ease inbound travel restrictions.

Passengers are also expected to have taken a COVID test 48 hours before departure, and have negative results to show for it.

According to the Dubai media office, the protocol will become effective from June 23, 2021.

“Passengers must have received a negative test result for a PCR test taken within 48 hours before departure; UAE citizens exempted,” the new guideline reads.

“Passengers should present a negative PCR test certificate with a 0R Code from labs approved by the Nigerian Government.

“All passengers must undergo a PCR test on arrival at Dubai Airport.

“Transit passengers should comply with entry protocols of final destinations.”

Headed by @sheikhmansoor, the Supreme Committee of Crisis and Disaster Management in #Dubai announces updates to Dubai’s travel protocols for inbound passengers from South Africa, Nigeria and India, effective from Wednesday 23 June 2021.https://t.co/Zfma4YWugQ pic.twitter.com/NkhIzaQwzI

— Dubai Media Office (@DXBMediaOffice) June 19, 2021

The federal government had been in talks with the authorities of the UAE over the travel protocol put in place against Nigeria in the wake of the resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In February, Emirates Airline had directed that travellers taking off from Nigeria must conduct rapid COVID-19 tests before departure, but the federal government had banned outbound Emirates flights for violating the directive of the presidential task force (PTF) on rapid antigen tests.

The ban was lifted after the airline agreed to stop the rapid antigen tests. It was later reintroduced on March 15, with the federal government explaining that the airline had continued to conduct rapid antigen tests for passengers before departure from Nigeria.

Thereafter, in March, the UAE embassy in Abuja announced a new COVID-19 travel protocol for Nigeria as part of measures to curtail the spread of the virus in the country.

Passengers who had been in or transited through South Africa or Nigeria in the last 14 days before travelling to Dubai were barred from entering the middle east country.

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BIG STORY

Arewa vs IPOB: Northern Youths Reports Irokotv App On Play Store After Google Removed Adamu Garba’s Crowwe App

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After several Northern youths targeted Jason Njoku’s Irokotv app on Playstore in retribution for the removal of Adamu Garba’s Crowwe app, a Nigerian man contacted the company’s owner, Jason Njoku.

This happened just days after Google banned Adamu Garba’s Crowwe App due to a copyright infringement by the social media company.

Remember that Adamu Garba, the CEO of Crowwe App, backed the suspension of Twitter’s operations in Nigeria following the federation’s ban on the social media platform.

He also made fun of Twitter, advising Nigerians to use his own social media app instead. However, numerous Nigerians complained and gave his app negative reviews, prompting its removal.

In revenge for Crowwe’s expulsion, Northern youths have mobilized to begin reporting Igbo-owned mobile apps. Jason Njoku’s iRokoTV and Softtalk messaging are among the apps listed.

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BIG STORY

Obasanjo Contributed To Nigeria’s Crisis, He Should Mind His Utterances —– Femi Adesina

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Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, says former President Olusegun Obasanjo contributed to the current chaos in the country, adding that the ex-military general should mind his utterances.

He stated this on Friday in a piece titled, ‘Nigeria’s Unity And All The Iberiberism’.

Adesina wrote, “The saber-rattling about Nigeria’s unity and the possibility of disintegration has got to the point of Iberiberism (an Igbo word which could mean stupidity). Some people have no other business than doomsday predictions of a crumbled, collapsed Nigeria, as if they actually fast and pray for that eventuality.

“When Chief Olusegun Obasanjo was President between 1999 and 2007, they predicted that he was going to be the last President of a united Nigeria. It didn’t happen. When Umaru Yar’Adua came, they said he was too sick to hold Nigeria together. The country stood.

“Under Goodluck Jonathan, they said the man was too weak, and different components of the country would soon say, ‘to your tents oh Israel.’ Nigeria survived. And for six years under Muhammadu Buhari, they have not changed their songs. The Somaliasation of Nigeria was on the way. The Fulanisation of the country would be the final death knell. But Nigeria lives. It trudges on from day to day, month to month, and will surely survive.”

Adesina said though some people dwell on negativity, “some fathers of the land will not fold their hands and see Nigeria go down”.

“Fortunately, we have one of them as President now. The young Muhammadu Buhari spent 30 months in the frontlines as a young army officer, fighting the war of unity. And he has said it: we will not be around and watch Nigeria go down. Never. We will rather speak to insurrectionists in the language they understand.

“And what of Olusegun Obasanjo, a civil war hero. Despite all that he has contributed to the current upheavals by his actions and inactions, words, and bile, he says it is idiotic to wish Nigeria disintegration now. Good. But let us put our money where our mouth is. Let Baba mind his thoughts, and his language,” the presidential spokesman added.

“Nigeria will survive. The polity will endure. And the component parts will live together in amity and brotherhood. Any other option is Iberiberism,” he concluded.

Obasanjo, a military head of state from February 1976 to September 1979, was Nigeria’s democratically elected president between May 1999 and May 2007.

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