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Not Happening: Twitter CEO debunks stories of Elon Musk joining company board

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Stories of billionaire Tesla Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk being on the board of Twitter after purchasing 73.5 million shares or 9.2 percent of the company’s common stock to become its largest shareholder, has been debunked by the social media company CEO Parag Agrawal.

In a statement on Sunday, Agrawal said though Musk is the firm’s biggest shareholder, he has decided not to join its board.

“Elon has decided not to join our board. Elon’s appointment to the board was to become officially effective 4/9, but Elon shared that same morning he will no longer be joining the board. I believe this is for the best.

“Elon is our biggest shareholder and we will remain open to his input,” Agrawal said.

The statement was a reversal of a previous statement barely a week ago, by the Twitter CEO who had announced that the billionaire tech entrepreneur had been appointed to join the Twitter board.

Agrawal had announced on Tuesday that Musk would be joining the board, describing him as “a passionate believer and intense critic of the service which is exactly what we need”.

Musk himself had tweeted that he was “Looking forward to working with Parag & Twitter board to make significant improvements to Twitter in coming months!”

But that is no longer happening as Musk has pulled out of joining the board without preferring any reason.

In less than two weeks since his purchase of the Twitter shares, Musk who is known for his outspoken nature, has polarised opinions, with the earlier announcement that he was joining the board sparking misgiving among some Twitter employees.

The SpaceX founder and Tesla CEO’s decision not to join the Twitter board came after he tweeted on Saturday asking whether the social media network was “dying” and to call out users such as singer Justin Bieber, who are highly followed but rarely post in the platform.

“Most of these ‘top’ accounts tweet rarely and post very little content. Is Twitter dying?” Musk wrote, captioning a list of the 10 profiles with the most followers which includes himself at number eight, with 81 million followers.

Musings From Abroad

CLIMATE CHANGE: Germany to sign climate protection contracts with industries

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As the cry towards a green environment intensifies amidst the increasing effects of climate change, Germany is taking a lead in the climate renewal agenda as it is set to sign climate protection contracts with industrial companies next year.

The Economy Minister, Robert Habeck revealed on Sunday that the agreement will support a transition towards cleaner production and a switch to hydrogen.

Habeck was quoted as saying by Funke media group that  “the aim is to efficiently develop a green industry along the value chain that becomes marketable.”

Reports emerged during the week that Germany was planning to award companies in energy-intensive industries including chemicals and steel 15-year subsidy arrangements that he called climate protection contracts, in return for reducing carbon emissions in their production.

Recall that several world leaders last month, converged in Cairo, the capital of Egypt for the United Nations COP27 Climate Summit, over talks on the “need to deepen cuts in emissions and financially back developing countries already devastated by the effects of rising temperatures.”

According to UNFCCC, the most recent seven years, from 2015 to 2021 were the warmest on record. The 2018–2022 global mean temperature average is estimated to be 1.17 ± 0.13 °C above the 1850–1900 average.

Africa seems to be feeling the heat more as countries across the continent’s East and West have suffered devasting drought and floods beyond what used to be the usual climate pattern.

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Musings From Abroad

Swiss firm, ABB, gets $4.3 million fine over bribery case in South Africa

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Judicial authority in Switzerland has fined engineering and technology group ABB, the sum of 4 million Swiss francs ($4.3 million) in connection with a bribery case in South Africa.

According to the country’s Attorney General, the fine on ABB is for “not having taken all necessary and reasonable organisational provisions in order to prevent bribery payments to foreign officials in South Africa”.

The group was found guilty of improper payments and other compliance issues at the Kusile power station after a wide-scale investigation into state corruption concluded in June 2022.

Earlier in the week, ABB and South Africa’s National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) agreed that the company will pay reparations for its involvement in state corruption.

According to a statement by the NPA, the company agreed to pay 2.5 billion rands ($144.51 million) in punitive reparations to South Africa within 60 days from the first day of December.

The reparation is in addition to 1.6 billion rand ($92.48 million)the company paid back to South African state power utility Eskom in 2020.

The Central Europe country has been fingered in lots of corruption cases involving African countries.

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