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Nigeria has a new university after Maduka University received approval for its official takeoff. It will commence its academic session on 23 November and joins scores of existing universities across Nigeria. Maduka was one of the businesses and firms that showcased its work on PREMIUM TIMES last week. Others include Jaiz Bank and Xiaomi. BANKING Jaiz Bank, Nigeria’s leading non-interest bank, reports a robust financial performance with a pre-tax profit of N6.68 billion in the nine months ending September 2023, reflecting a remarkable 73.72 per cent year-on-year growth. The bank achieved gross earnings of N33.04 billion, a 39.60 per cent increase compared to the same period in 2022. Operating under Islamic banking principles, Jaiz Bank attributes its success to investing and financing activities, with total deposits growing by 63 per cent to N405 billion, contributing significantly to Nigeria’s economic growth. The bank’s balance sheet expanded by 68 per cent, closing at N546 billion. OIL AND GAS The Nigeria LNG Limited’s $5 billion Train-7 project, situated in Bonny Island, Rivers State, has achieved 52 per cent completion, employing 8,300 Nigerians. During an engagement session with the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), an agreement was signed to implement the Oil and Gas E-Market Place, facilitating transparent transactions. Despite progress, challenges include insufficient gas supply and deepwater project activation. The NLNG seeks support from the NCDMB to overcome obstacles and ensure the success of Train-7 and future expansions. TELECOMMUNICATIONS The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) emphasises the crucial role of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in combating financial crimes. The Executive Vice Chairman, Aminu Maida, highlighted the need for robust ICT systems for real-time surveillance, regulatory compliance, and secure data processing. He emphasised the multi-disciplinary and multi-stakeholder collaboration required to address illicit financial flows. The NCC aims to leverage ICT tools, including blockchain, artificial intelligence, and data analytics, to proactively prevent and combat financial crime TOURISM Phillips Consulting Limited (pcl.) and the Nigerian South African Chamber of Commerce (NSACC) joined forces for the Annual Breakfast Forum, focusing on redefining tourism in Nigeria. Key discussions highlighted the importance of technology, music, lifestyle, and government support in revitalising the tourism sector. The event featured insights from thought leaders, including the significance of domestic tourism, the role of culture and festivals, and the need for improved connectivity and sustainability. The collaboration aims to drive positive change in Nigeria’s tourism industry. HEALTH Dettol collaborates with the Federal Ministry of Water Resources to mark the 2023 Global Handwashing Day in Abuja. With the theme ‘Clean Hands Are Within Reach,’ the event underscores Dettol’s commitment to promoting regular and proper hand-washing education in Nigeria, emphasising the importance of hand hygiene in breaking the chain of infections. The partnership aligns with Dettol’s broader initiatives, including the Clean Naija Initiative, aimed at creating a healthier Nigeria through improved hygiene practices. Pepsodent, in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigerian Dental Association, concludes its ‘Pepsodent Talk to a Dentist Activation’ oral health campaign in underserved communities and schools across nine states in Nigeria. The initiative, aimed at reducing the burden of untreated oral diseases, engaged over 1 million residents and school children, providing dental check-ups and promoting good oral hygiene practices. FINTECH Kenyan High Court clears Flutterwave of wrongdoing and criticizes the Asset Recovery Agency (ARA) for hasty legal action, citing lack of proper investigation as reckless and absurd. Flutterwave expresses appreciation for the verdict, reiterates its commitment to ethical practices, and focuses on obtaining licensing from the Central Bank of Kenya for further expansion and support to local businesses. MOBILE TELEPHONY Xiaomi unveils the Redmi 13C, a smartphone designed to redefine possibilities with a 6.74-inch immersive display, a 5000mAh battery, and an impressive 50MP triple camera system. Powered by MediaTek Helio G85, it offers swift performance and comes in various configurations, catering to diverse user needs. The Redmi 13C is positioned as the ultimate gift for the ember season, promising a revolutionary experience in smartphone technology. EDUCATION Maduka University has received approval for its official takeoff, commencing its academic session on November 23, 2023. The university, located in Ekwegbe, Igbo-Etiti LGA, offers 19 programs and emphasises accessibility with competitively priced school fees. Admissions are still open, and the university provides a pre-degree program for students without JAMB. For inquiries and applications, prospective students can contact Maduka University. CRYPTOCURRENCY As regulators globally grapple with the challenge of regulating Bitcoin, this blog explores key legal and regulatory hurdles in the cryptocurrency ecosystem. Highlighting Bitcoin’s decentralised nature and self-regulatory mechanism, the article emphasises the need for a delicate balance between regulation and preserving innovation. Key challenges include the risk of over-regulation hindering financial democratisation, the evolving classification of Bitcoin, and the potential impact on technological innovation. Despite concerns, the article suggests that Bitcoin’s value and popularity will persist, necessitating collaborative and creative solutions in the ongoing regulatory discourse. GAMBLING Japan’s established casino industry, with strict regulations, is attracting international operators, while Nigeria’s emerging market, legalised in 1990, is in its early stages. Both countries see growing interest from domestic and foreign investors in online casinos, with differences in regulatory frameworks, game preferences, and economic impacts. The comparison highlights the contrasting development stages and potential impact of foreign investments on Nigeria’s casino industry compared to Japan’s mature market. OTHERS The UK-based leadership development organisation, TEXEM, calls on Nigerian leaders to embrace strategic leadership for effective societal transformation. Highlighting their upcoming programme, “Leading Transformation for Strategic Outcomes,” TEXEM aims to equip leaders with insights to navigate a VUCAT world (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, Ambiguity, Turbulence). The programme focuses on agility, innovation, and resilience, offering a platform for leaders to drive inclusive economic growth and address key challenges. Distinguished faculty members, including survivors and industry experts, contribute to a unique learning experience, emphasising the importance of strategic leadership in today’s disruptive landscape. ALX Nigeria’s Country General Manager, Ruby Igwe, sees Nigeria’s human capital deficit as an opportunity for technological growth. Speaking at the 2023 Digital Nigeria International Conference, she emphasised the need for public-private partnerships to empower youth with tech skills. ALX aims to train over 3 million talents, contributing to job creation and entrepreneurial ventures in the digital economy. The conference highlighted the importance of collaboration between the government and private sector to improve digital literacy and inclusivity in the evolving digital landscape.

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