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Suspect: I made N400,000 a month supplying bread to bandits in Kaduna

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Hassan Magaji, a suspect and bread factory owner, says he made N400,000 supplying bread to bandits in Kaduna state.

Magaji, Abubakar Ibrahim, Auwal Abubakar and Ibrahim Kabiru were arrested by the police on June 8 on their way to Damari forest around Birnin Gwari and Giwa Local LGAs.

At the time they were arrested, they reportedly had 150 loaves of bread at the factory.

The bread factory owner said it was a relative who taught him how to bake bread.

“My relative, Mustafa Magaji, who owns several bread factories, visited in 2018 and taught me how to bake cakes. I used the N21,000 that I was able to save to start the business and now I make at least N400, 000 a month,” the suspect told The SUN.

“The boom in my business began when I started supplying bread to bandits.

“Initially, I used to go around their camp area to sell bread in small quantities. Luckily, it was during one such movement in 2019 that I met Mohammed from Galadimawa and he bought ten loaves of bread and took my phone number.

“I sold the bread N200 each instead of the regular market price which was N170. The next day, he called me and said that the bread was so sweet that I should bring 20 pieces.

“The day I took 20 pieces and I met with three others who were with him that day. They told me that they would like to be buying in a larger quantity and I told them that I did not have enough cash. We agreed that they would pay the entire money before I would bake.

“They started with N20, 000 worth of bread and gradually increased it to N50, 000 a day. After removing the cost of ingredients, I make as much as N150,000 in a week.”

On his part, Abubakar said he started working for Magaji three months ago and did not know that selling items to criminals is illegal.

The Cable

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We’re yet to renew MTN’s mobile operating licence – NCC

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MTN is yet to renew its Universal Access Service License, UASL, the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, has said.

This was contained in a statement by Ikechukwu Adinde, Director, Public Affairs, NCC, in Abuja.

”The attention of the NCC is drawn to a publication in an online media titled: “Govt renews MTN Nigeria licence amid 20 years of GSM Phones.

”The publication was to the effect that the mobile operating licence of MTN had been renewed by the Commission for another period of ten years.
“The online publication which cited regulatory filings by the NCC as its source, stated that MTN Nigeria, the nation’s largest Mobile Network Operator (MNO), has secured regulatory approval of the renewal of its operating licence for another 10 years with effect from Sept. 1, 2021.”

The Commission said that while MTN Nigeria has applied for the renewal of the UASL, the application is yet to be approved as it is still undergoing required regulatory processes.

“This statement is issued for the guidance of our general stakeholders,” the NCC said

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Bad Economy: Imo bakers sack 15,306 staff, shut102 factories.

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Association of Master Bakers and Caterers (AMCN) of Nigeria Incorporated, Imo State, has sacked 15,306 of their workers following the high cost of materials for production.

Briefing newsmen, chairman, Chief Osmond Nkeoma, explained that the action became necessary following the increase in prices of items especially for bread production.

Nkeoma revealed that the retrenchment will affect 102 bread factories in the state which would shutdown business from August 2.

To worsen the situation, he disclosed that despite the increase in the price of the commodities for bread production, two major producers of flour have suspended operation because of high exchange rates while expecting that more may join soon.

Nkeoma disclosed that if after the measures taken by the association to enhance the production of bread did not yield any result, bread factories in the state he said would have to shutdown indefinitely.

He, therefore, appealed to government through Governor Hope Uzodimma to come to their aide and stop the impending loss of job and consumption of bread in the state.

“We believe if the state government intervenes, these actions may be averted. Counterpart funds are given other states, even bail out on COVID-19 given by other states eludes us. It is important to inform you here that we having been producing in the past 3 months at lost,” Nkeoma said.

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Augusto & Co Assigns ‘AAA’, Stable Outlook on DBN

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Top credit rating agency, Agusto & Co. (“Agusto”) has assigned a “AAA” rating, on the Development Bank of Nigeria (DBN) Plc (DBN), the highest rating possible on any institution.

In summarising the rating, which aligns with the ‘risk-free’ rating of the Nigerian Sovereign, Agusto described DBN as “a development finance institution of impeccable financial condition and overwhelming capacity to meet obligations as and when they fall due.”

Agusto stated: “Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, DBN increased its financial support to Micro, Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs) and small-sized corporates through participating financial institutions”.

“Notwithstanding the pandemic, DBN doubled its loan portfolio to N215.1billion, leveraging its robust risk management practice in deepening credit penetration to over 136,000 MSMEs.”

Applauding the impeccable fundamentals of the bank, Agusto highlighted that the DBN’s good asset quality, good capitalisation, good liquidity, and experienced management team are also positive rating factors.

The rating agency noted that since its inception, DBN has sustained an outstanding asset quality record of nil delinquency, unique fundamentals which attest to the efficacy of its credit creation model and overall risk management culture.

It added that in pursuit of its mandate of enhancing access to credit for micro, small and medium scale enterprises (MSMEs), DBN continues to expand the scope of its operations, onboarding more Participating Financial Institutions (PFIs) and deepening credit penetration in the low end of the market, particularly among women entrepreneurs, who represent over 50 per cent of the bank’s ultimate credit beneficiaries.

Augusto explained that, notably, the bank maintains a BASEL II capital ratio of 75.2 per cent, several multiples of the minimum 10 per cent regulatory requirement, adding that during the review period, the liquidity ratio hovered around 84 per cent, compared to the 10 per cent regulatory requirement.

This, it observed, by implication, is an indication of DBN’s capacity to sustain the pursuit of deepening credit penetration among MSMEs.

The strong financial metrics, complemented by impeccable governance standards reinforce Agusto’s decision to assign “AAA” on DBN, with a stable outlook.

In its credit rating announcement, Agusto noted that DBN’s rating “yakes into cognisance the support of the bank’s shareholders – the Ministry of Finance Incorporated, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), African Development Bank (AfDB) and the European Investment Bank (EIB).

AfDB and EIB are both rated ‘AAA’ by Standard and Poors, Moody’s, and Fitch Ratings.

Aside from equity contribution, AfDB provides long-term borrowing, technical and business support to DBN.

The rating also considers the support of other international development finance institutions such as the French Development Agency (AFD), KfW – the German Development Bank, and the World Bank, which provides funding and technical support, in addition to strengthening governance.

Commenting on the rating action, the Managing Director/CEO, Development Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Tony Okpanachi said: “We are excited by this independent assessment of our operations, as it provides an objective opinion on the bank’s credibility and capacity in meeting short and long-term obligations.

“The rigorous and detailed process underlying Agusto’s rating is quite commendable, and I am pleased that the bank was assigned “Aaa”, the highest rating possible.

“Interestingly, this rating action aligns with a recent decision of Global Credit Ratings (GCR), another foremost rating agency that also assigned “AAA” national scale rating on DBN. As we continue to uphold gold standards in risk management and governance practices, we would sustain these well-deserved ratings, which are pertinent to our medium to long-term objectives, as we execute our unique strategies for unlocking credit for MSMEs.”

Reacting to the rating, the Executive Director, Finance & Corporate Services, Mrs. Ijeoma Ozulumba also, noted that, “Agusto’s assignment of “AAA” on the bank is another testament to the strong credibility and capacity of the bank, as a distinguished development finance institution with an impeccable and overwhelming capacity to meet obligations and deliver on its core mandate. We would continue to leverage the bank’s balance sheet capacity, global best governance practice, robust risk management framework, and collaborative approach in easing access to credit for growing Nigerian MSMEs, which portend the salient capacity to create jobs, industrialize the economy and drive sustainable growth.”

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