President Buhari will swear in his 43 ministerial nominees on Wednesday, 21 August, following their confirmation last week by the Senate. The Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Affairs, Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Babatunde Lawal, announced this yesterday. The lawmakers approved all the 43 persons sent in by the President, but the portfolio for each of the nominees is still unknown. Buhari is expected to assign them portfolios when they are inaugurated. A number of senior figures from Buhari’s first term will return, including Zainab Ahmed, the former finance minister; Babatunde Fashola, the former minister of works, power and housing; Geoffrey Onyeama, the former foreign affairs minister; Rotimi Amaechi, the former transport minister; and Lai Mohammed, who headed the information ministry.
The Federal High Court in Lagos has ordered the freezing of three bank accounts belonging to the Lagos State Government over an alleged fraud of ₦9.9 billion fraud. The court judge, Chuka Obiozor, ordered the suspension following an ex parte application by the EFCC. The EFCC asked the court to freeze the accounts pending the conclusion of an investigation and possible prosecution of Adewale Adesanya, a Permanent Secretary in the Office of the Chief of Staff to the Lagos State Governor, for money laundering. The EFCC discovered “a huge inflow of ₦9,927,714,443.29” from the state accounts into an FCMB bank account opened on 17 September 2018 according to a member of the EFCC investigating team, Kungmi Daniel. The account, he said, was operated by Adesanya. Daniel said transactions of the FCMB account showed how Adesanya and the other signatories to the account made fraudulent transfers from the accounts of the government and misspent the funds. The case was adjourned till 9 August.
The chairman of Seplat Petroleum, A.B.C Orjiako, has sold a total of 3.5 million units of his shares in the energy firm to another investor. The divested equities, in a statement to NSE, were from the 29.8 million shares indirectly held by Orjiako, registered in the name of Vitol Energy. These stocks were held for the benefit of Shebah Petroleum Development Company, a company owned by Orjiako and members of his family. Before the sale, Orjiako controlled 16.15 million ordinary shares of Seplat. In a regulatory disclosure to the NSE, Seplat said the sale of the 3.5 million shares by its chairman took place in London at the rate of £1.14 per unit, amounting to £3.99 million. Going by the transaction, Orjiako now holds a direct interest in 16.151 million ordinary shares and an indirect interest in 26.3 million ordinary shares of the Company totalling 42.5 million shares, or voting interest of 7.21 percent.
The CBN has ordered the lending institutions under its regulation to obtain the credit history of customers before giving out loans to them. The CBN gave the directive, amongst other rules, to ensure that consumers’ capability to repay credits is efficiently assessed. The guidelines apply to all transactions by financial institutions licensed by the CBN, the agents, subsidiaries and associates. These include commercial banks, merchant banks, specialised banks, micro-finance banks, Development Finance Institutions, finance companies, Bureaux-de Change, Primary Mortgage Banks, credit bureaux, and Payment Service Banks. The regulator asked the banks to obtain the credit history from the Credit Risk Management System, Credit Bureaux and other sources of credit reference to ascertain consumers’ outstanding debt obligations and repayment history before advancing credits. In the event of a loan default, the regulatory guideline said that banks must give customers a minimum period of 6 months from the date of notice of foreclosure, the option of a private sale before commencing foreclosure. The CBN warned that financial institutions that fail to comply with the regulations will be sanctioned with fines provided in the CBN Act and Banking and other Financial Institutions Act.