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Polaris Bank CEO, Sonola Advocates Legal Reforms for Economic Growth at NBA Summit

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Photo caption:Polaris Bank CEO, Adekunle Sonola (right) with the Chairman of the NBA Lagos Dinner Committee, Adeleke Alex-Adedipe during the branch Annual Law Dinner event which held in Lagos at the weekend.

Polaris Bank’s CEO, Adekunle Sonola, has urged Nigerian government to prioritize legal policy and reforms for sustained economic growth.

Sonola made the call in a presentation he delivered at the Annual Law Dinner of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Lagos branch which held at the weekend in Lagos themed: “Favourable Investment and Business Environment Through Legal Policy & Reforms”.

The summit, a pivotal gathering for industry leaders, legal luminaries and High Networth Individuals (HNIs), provided a platform for the CEO to underscore the critical role of legal frameworks in shaping a conducive environment for investments and business development.

Emphasizing the need for legal reforms in his address, Sonola highlighted the escalating challenges faced by businesses in the ever-evolving national and global landscape. He reiterated the indispensable need for comprehensive legal reforms to align with the demands of modern business operations.

Sharing insights on the current business environment, the Polaris Bank CEO, delved into the prevailing challenges within the investment and business climate such a; high high-interest rates, security concerns, and infrastructure deficits. He explained the nexus between legal activities and the day-to-day operations of businesses, highlighting the profound impact on overall competitiveness.

Sonola outlined several key challenges within the legal system, including; prolonged dispute resolution times, a backlog of cases, and manual court processes. His presentation articulated concerns about inadequate remuneration for Judges, obstacles in the administration of laws, and the imperatives for improved law enforcement.

Sonola put forth a series of recommendations for comprehensive legal policy and reforms. These recommendations include; a thorough review of laws governing business ownership; streamlined taxation processes, and improved immigration procedures. The Banker emphasized the need for social embeddedness, increased accessibility, and the incorporation of automation to modernize the legal framework.

In projecting into the future, the Polaris Bank CEO underscored the perpetual need for legal reforms, while emphasizing their role in aligning with the dynamic economic and social landscape. He concluded with a positive outlook, noting that effective legal frameworks are pivotal for business growth, attracting investments, and fostering overall economic well-being of Nigeria

Earlier in his welcome address, Chairman of Lagos NBA, and the Chief Host of the Annual Law Dinner, Olabisi Makanjuola while commending members of the branch for the immense support his administration has received in the last 6 months described the session as not “a mere gathering but a tradition” woven into the fabric of fostering goodwill between the Bar and the Bench. Continuing, he reiterated that “our tradition of inviting members of the Bench to our dinners, is a testament to our belief that when lawyers and Judges share moments of conviviality, it bridges the widening gap between us in real-time.

He expressed appreciation to Polaris Bank CEO, Adekunle Sonola for graciously accepting to deliver the Annual Dinner lecture and also had kind words for sponsors of the event.

Earlier, Chairman of the NBA Lagos Dinner Committee, Adeleke Alex-Adedipe had appreciated stakeholders of Lagos NBA for their immense support which made the Annual Law Dinner, a reality and commended members of the Committee for their dedication and sacrifice that delivered a well-organized dinner.

Highlight of the Annual Law Dinner saw the presentation of certificates of recognition to distinguished members of top law firms and current and retired Jurists considered a noteworthy gesture, that was warmly acknowledged by those present.

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Gov AbdulRazaq Announces Minor Cabinet Reshuffle

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Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has effected a minor cabinet reshuffle involving four commissioners.

Those affected are the Commissioner for Social Development Hon. Afolashade Justina, who moves to Women Affairs; and the Commissioner for Women Affairs Hon. Bosede Olaitan Buraimoh who switches to Social Development.

Hon. Commissioner for Youth Development Nafisat Buge moves to the Ministry of Environment, whose Commissioner Hon. Shehu Ndanusa Usman moves to the Ministry of Youth Development.

The cabinet reshuffle takes immediate effect.

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Kwara Gov excited as Nigerian Army launches CBT Centre in Igbaja

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  • Gov hails Army’s support for internal security, seeks respect for security agencies
  • Army Chief lauds Gov’s support in Kwara, North Central • Gov attends Igbaja Day, now Taiyese of Irese Land

Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq on Thursday advocated more appreciation for the sacrifices of the security agencies, including the Nigerian Army.

He said the military has played important roles to support civilian authorities at all times, including at a time when the country was under intense pressure from hostile non-state actors.

The Governor spoke in Igbaja, Ifelodun LG of the state, at the commissioning of a Computer Based Testing (CBT) center, a special intervention project of the Chief of Army Staff (CoAS), Lieutenant General T. A. Lagbaja.

The project was executed by Major General Adelokun Eyitayo, a serving military officer and native of Igbaja Land, who also launched his three books, titled: ‘Life of Prince Daud and Spirituality; Tears for Suni and Titi; and The Boy on the Highland’.

“This Computer Centre means a lot for the socioeconomic growth of this community. Not only does it nudge members of the community towards acquisition of necessary skills for this age; it opens up new frontiers of socioeconomic benefits for Igbaja and communities around it,” the Governor said.

“I am also fascinated by the spirit behind this project. It is timely and necessary. The need for better military-civil relations cannot be over-emphasized. Recent developments in our country again suggest a need to deepen citizens’ appreciation of the sacrifices that our security forces make to keep us safe, stabilise the fabric of our society, and ward off every threat against the Nigerian state.

“Over the last two decades, the military has played very important roles to support civilian authorities at all times, including at a time when our country came under intense pressure from hostile non-state actors.”

AbdulRazaq commended the Federal Government and the Chief of Army Staff for establishing the CBT centre that he said will aid skill acquisition and boost socioeconomic growth of the area.

“We therefore cannot thank the federal government and our military enough. We must appreciate and honour members of our security forces, including military personnel deployed in internal operations and during emergencies, and cease all attacks on them,” he added.

The commissioning attracted various dignitaries, including the CoAS Lieutenant General T. A. Lagbaja, who was represented by Maj Gen Obinna Onubogu; the Elese of Igbajaland Oba Ahmed Awuni Arepo III; and Igbaja CBT Project Executor Major General Adelokun Eyitayo; among others.

Lagbaja, for his part, said the execution of the project further affirms the transformational drive of the Nigerian Army towards achieving its constitutional responsibility through a non-kinetic line of operations.

The Army Chief thanked Governor AbdulRazaq and the people of the state for their continued support for the operations of the Nigerian Army.

“The Nigerian Army has received tremendous support from your government. It is also gladdening to note that we have enjoyed cordial working relationships with you over the years, and your support has contributed immensely to our operational success within the state and the entire North Central region,” he said.

Maj Gen. Eyitayo thanked CoAS for the approval of the project and his unwavering support for its delivery.

He also appreciated the Governor for directing the purchase and supply of his three books for the use of students of public secondary schools in the state.

The Governor, meanwhile, attended the 2024 Igbaja Day celebration, where he urged the people of Igbaja to continue to recognise the rich cultural heritage and diversity that makes the community to be unique.

He congratulated the Elese of Igbaja, the Jagunmolu of Igbaja and founder of Al-hikmah University Chief Oladimeji Igbaja, and all sons and daughters of Igbaja community on the celebration, requesting them to continue to unite for accelerated growth.

“Let us embrace and celebrate our diversity, and continue to build bridges of understanding and empathy,” the Governor said.

“As you are aware, our administration has embarked on various projects that touched the lives of everyone across the state, including Igbajaland. We will continue to do more to improve the lives of our people.”

Chief Oladimeji, who was excited by the Governor’s culture of arriving early for events, praised AbdulRazaq for time management, and how the administration has executed many laudable programmes and projects in the town and elsewhere.

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Africa needs to be competitive, says Chike-Obi, Fidelity Bank’s Chairman

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Africa needs to be competitive and efficient in its area of strength, according to Mustafa Chike-Obi, the Chairman of Fidelity Bank, who spoke with CNBC Africa’s Kenneth Igbomor on the sidelines of the AFREXIMBANK Annual meetings in Nassau, the Bahamas.

Chike-Obi emphasized the importance of focused and sharp leadership in harnessing the continent’s strengths to achieve prosperity. He highlighted the need for Africa to identify areas of competitive advantage in producing goods and services efficiently to unlock its full potential.

He pointed out that success stories in areas like sports demonstrate Africa’s potential when leveraging advantages. However, he stressed the crucial role of collaboration and seamless interaction among African nations and regions for sustainable development.

The chairman urged for enhanced integration to facilitate the movement of goods and services across the continent, emphasizing the necessity to work collectively towards common goals.

Chike-Obi also addressed the importance of prioritizing Africa’s strengths, such as power supply, through cohesive policies and agreements to drive economic growth. He emphasized the need for coordinated banking policies to promote financial integration within Africa and with external partners, emphasizing the significance of streamlined banking services and transactions.

The Chairman highlighted the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) as a significant opportunity for economic advancement but called for more practical implementation to ensure its effectiveness. He underscored the importance of execution in translating policies into tangible outcomes for the African people.

Reflecting on the annual meetings and the discussions on trade and investment, Chike-Obi reiterated the critical importance of collaboration for Africa’s progress, emphasizing that unity and concerted efforts are essential for realizing the continent’s potential.

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