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Rich also cry as Nigerian billionaire, Tony Elumelu laments over state of the nation

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The current social-economic reality in Nigeria isn’t leaving anyone out as billionaire and Chairman Heirs Holdings, Mr Tony Elumelu, Thursday lamented over Nigeria’s failure to maximize her full potential as an oil pronouncing state.

Elumelu narrated the experience of some of his colleagues at work on his official Twitter handle.

He tweeted, “This morning, I am listening to my colleagues at the office bemoan the very pressing issues that they face every day in this country, and how things have been getting worse and worse – no electricity for five days, hikes in the price of diesel, frightening food inflation, etc.

Elumelu expressed disappointment over Nigeria’s lack of efforts to make the most out of the current rise in oil price while oil-producing countries were happy that prices had been rising and their foreign reserves continue to grow.

“Meanwhile, oil-producing countries are smiling as their foreign reserves rise. What is Nigeria’s problem? We need to hold our leaders more accountable,” he added.

“How can a country so rich in natural resources have 90 per cent of its citizens living in hardship and poverty? I have often said that access to electricity is critical for our development, alleviation of poverty and hardship. And speaking of security, our people are afraid! Businesses are suffering.”

He urged Nigerians to be “vocal” about the way they are governed and hold their leaders more accountable.

He said, “Elections are coming – security and resources need to be everyone’s agenda – let’s be vocal for our nation’s priority.
“Evil prevails when good people are silent. We need to be vocal about 2023. Let’s focus on Nigeria. Demand and advocate for leaders that deliver. In 2023, Nigeria must be on a strong trajectory for progress and development.”

 

The businessman, who chairs the Board of the United Bank for Africa (UBA), argued that being endowed with huge natural resources, the country should not be in its current decrepit state.

“How can we be losing over 95 per cent of oil production to thieves? Look at the Bonny Terminal that should be receiving over 200,000bpd barrels of crude oil daily, instead it receives less than 3,000 barrels, leading the operator , Shell to declare force majeure.

“Why are we paying taxes if our security agencies can’t stop this? It is clear that the reason Nigeria is unable to meet its OPEC production quota is not because of low investment but because of theft, pure and simple!”

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Zimbabwe continues battle to save currency, introduces gold coins as legal tender. Will that work?

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South African country, Zimbabwe has continued its battle at fighting inflation as its central bank will start issuing gold coins as legal tender in late July.

Soaring inflation has weakened the local currency and the central hopes the gold coin, named ‘Mosi-oa-Tunya’, after Victoria Falls, can be converted into cash in the bid to strengthen its legal tender.

Last month, Zimbabwe raised its key rate to 200 percent after it was raised from raised to 80% in April from 60%. The decision made the country’s rate the highest in the world as it battles with soaring inflation persist. The rate was last

The central bank governor, John Mangudya in a statement on Monday, said that the gold coins will be available for sale to the public in both local currency and US dollars and other foreign currencies at a price based on the prevailing international price of gold and the cost production”.

The coins are expected to act as a ‘store of value and to reduce the demand for US dollars’ – something that has been blamed for the weakening value of the local currency.

In another move 2 months ago, the Zimbabwean government has ordered commercial banks in the country to stop lending money to government at all levels, businesses and individuals with immediate effect.

Will the introduction of the coins be the final answer to Zimbabwe currency crises the possibility is low as its current inflation situation is a product of many factors which cannot be turned over night but hopefully the coins will be the flip that leads a new path.

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Somalia gives foreign banks licence to operate in decades

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The Somali government has announced the licensing of foreign banks for the first time in over two decades six weeks after President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud was sworn into office following an elections that took years to conduct following a lingering political crisis.

The announcement which was made on Monday by the governor of the Central Bank of Somalia (CBS) Abdirahman Mohamed Abdullahi, said the war-ravaged country has granted banking licenses to two foreign institutions to operate in the country after President Mohamoud had promised to open the country to international investment during his campaigns for the elections.

The first foreign banking institutions to benefit from the decision are Egyptian bank, Banque Misr, and Turkish bank, Ziraat Katilim, who have been allowed to operate in Somalia.

“The review of the applications of these two banks has been the subject of a lengthy process of several months.

“These are two strong banks that will add value to the development of Somalia’s financial sector and contribute to the growth of our economy,” the CBS governor said

Ranked one of the poorest countries in the world by the World Bank, the average Somalian lives on less than $1.90 a day as the country struggles to recover from decades civil war and and opening its doors to foreign investments is seen as President Mohamoud fulfilment of his pledge to improve the economic situation and provide basic banking services to the population.

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