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Rivers APC Guber candidate, Tonye Cole reportedly skipped NYSC, omits degrees in nomination forms



The gubernatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State, Tonye Cole, is in trouble for skipping the mandatory National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) scheme, the NEXT EDITION has found out.

Sources close to the stylish businessman-turned-politician said he is struggling to get the NYSC to help him out with the problem.

The Lagos-based billionaire emerged APC’s gubernatorial candidate for 2019 during the party’s primary in Port Harcourt on October 1.

Lawal Isa, Chairman, Rivers State APC Governorship Primary Election Committee, had said Mr. Cole got 3,329 votes to beat other aspirants.

According to him, Dawari George, a former aide to Rotimi Amaechi, scored 491 votes to come a distant second.

Dumo Lulu-Briggs, another business mogul who stood the election, secured 38 votes while a serving Senator, Magnus Abe, got a single vote.

Mr. Abe was the only person who voted for himself in the primary that was attended by no fewer than 4000 delegates.

But weeks after the primary was conducted and won, Mr. Cole is yet to name his running mate, situation observers blamed on the fear he might be disqualified after all.

This newspaper found out Mr. Cole deliberately omitted his tertiary education qualifications in the nomination forms he submitted to his party and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Under academic records, Mr. Cole indicated he attended Corona School, Victoria Island, Lagos from 1973-1978 and King’s College, Lagos, between 1978 -1983.

This shows in spite of his rich educational background, he only filed his primary school leaving certificate and the ordinary level West African Examination Council General Certificate of Education he obtained in June 1983 from the King’s College.

Apart from the WASCE, Mr. Cole also attached a testimonial from King’s College which showed he was born on January 11, 1967, and had attended the institution from Form One to Five.

With registration number 4107, he was a member of Mckee Wright House as well as the Literary and Debating Club.

The principal of the school at the time, Olapeju Oladele, indicated he held no leadership position but indicated he had a promising career.

“He has very strong personality traits and was well-behaved,” under behavioural traits.

However, under general remarks, Mr. Oladele wrote, “Patrick was a very promising student who has high potential to succeed in his chosen career.”

Based on his WASC attached to his nomination forms, Mr. Cole had credit (4) in English Language, good (3) in Geography, credit (4) in Economic and credit (6) in Mathematics.

Others include Physics – pass (7), Biology – credit (5), Art –credit (5) and Technical Drawing –pass (7).

With only WASC and a testimonial from King’s College attached to his forms, it seemed Mr. Cole, for some undisclosed reasons, deliberately omitted his degrees as contained in his public profiles.

While he failed to indicate his tertiary education qualifications, the APC candidate sumptuously showcased the training he has attended across the globe and the many papers he has presented and positions he has occupied.

But findings by this newspaper showed Mr. Cole went straight to King’s School, Ely, Cambridgeshire, the United Kingdom after he left King’s College, Lagos at age 16.

He is also said to be an alumnus of the University of Lagos and Universidade de Brasilia, Brazil, where he was graduated with merit honours in Architecture.

Curiously, information regarding his tertiary education and the record of his compulsory NYSC participation are all absent in the document he filed with his party and INEC.


Given his family background and the age he completed his primary and secondary education, it is very clear Mr. Cole got his first degree before he was 23.

The one-year service, organised by NYSC is compulsory for all Nigerians who graduate from universities or equivalent institutions at less than 30 years of age.

Apart from being a prerequisite for obtaining government and private sector jobs in Nigeria, the NYSC Act prescribes punishment for anyone who absconds from the scheme or forges its certificates.

For instance, eligible persons, who skipped the scheme, are liable to be sentenced to 12 months imprisonment and/or N2, 000 fine, based on Section 13 of the NYSC law.

In Section 13 (3) of the Act, a three-year jail term or option of N5,000 fine is prescribed for anyone who contravenes the provisions of the law.

Subsection 4 of the same section also criminalises giving false information or illegally obtaining the agency’s certificate.

It provides for up to a three-year jail term for such offenders.

NEXT EDITION made several attempts within the last two weeks to speak with Mr. Cole on the issue but failed.

The APC chieftain would not pick calls or respond to text messages from this newspaper.

However, when contacted, on one of his allies, Tonye Princewill, said Mr. Cole could not speak on the issue because the party was yet to set up a campaign structure for the 2019 polls.

All of Mr. Cole’s public profiles show he had tertiary education in Nigeria and in Brazil but none indicates the dates of his graduation.

NEXT EDITION could not also extract any record of where he served in any of such profiles, some of which have been edited recently.

Attempts to speak with the NYSC spokesperson, Adenike Adeyemi, failed as her line was unreachable and text message to her phone was not replied.

But a senior staff of the scheme, who could not be named because he is not authorised to speak on the matter said the NYSC has no record Mr. Cole served or was offered an exemption.



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Delta Gov. Okowa’s commissioner in alleged multi-million naira fraud scandal



Barely two weeks to the expiration of the first term and inauguration of the second term of Delta state governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, the information commissioner, Patrick Ukah has been enmeshed in series of frauds and corrupt practices running into several millions of naira belonging to his ministry.

Our correspondent reliably gathered that the embattled information commissioner, used the state owned Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba and Warri as well as the state owned Newspapers, The Pointer to loot millions of naira from the coffers of the ministry through frivolous contracts he was said to have awarded to some of his cronies without any traceable addresses of such contractors.

HardReporters crime correspondent in Lagos, who just returned from Delta state capital, Asaba, Monday, on a fact finding mission to the state owned media houses, gathered that the state information commissioner, had lied in some official documents in his hand over note presented to the state transition committee.

In the documents, according to an impeccable source close to the transition committee, Ukah, lied that he purchased eight cameras at the cost of N18,721,738.00 for Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba and Warri, purchased some equipment for Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba and Warri at the cost of N9,654,750.00, repaired the FM coxial feeder line at Delta Broadcasting Service, Warri at the cost of N16,620,000.00, purchased some equipment for Delta Broadcasting Service at N11,553,750.00.

In the documents, Ukah, also lied to have carried out the repairs of the back-up transmitters at Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba, Ubulu-Uku and Warri at the cost of N43,000,000.00, Mast tensioning, painting and repairs of Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba at the cost of N11,150,000.00, installation of antenna and repairs of TV transmitters at the cost of N57,240,000.00, brief to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa on the 2017 flood disaster in Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba and restoration of the station back to air at the cost of N17,000,000.00, repairs of faulty back up transmitters at Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba, Ubulu-Uku and Warri at the cost of N68,380,000.00.

According to reliable sources at the state ministry of information, the documents which is full of discrepancies and fraudulent are currently generating controversy as there are nothing is on ground to show that actually such huge amount running into several millions of naira was expended on the state owned media houses as been claimed by the information commissioner.

A senior director at the Ministry of Information who pleaded for anonymity confided in our correspondent that the information commissioner is currently been investigated by the transition committee.

“As we talk the Delta state transition committee has commenced investigation of the state information commissioner, Patrick Ukah, over his bogus claims made. The documents show that a huge fraud, corruption and sharp practices was carried out by the information commissioner. How can you purchase eight camera for N18.7 million.?

“Our check revealed that each camera, Sony Digital HXR-NX 100 camera, the commissioner claimed to have bought at over N2 million is actually sold for less that N600,000.00. How can you say you repaired FM coxial feeder line at N16,620,000.00, back-up transmitters at N43,000,000.00, mast tensioning, painting and repairs at N11,150,000.00.

“How can you say provision and installation of antenna and repairs of TV transmitters cost you N57,240,000.00, to brief governor Ifeanyi Okowa alone on the 2017 flood disaster in Delta Broadcasting Service, Asaba and restoration of the station back to air cost you N17,000,000.00, repairs of faulty back up transmitters cost you N68,380,000.00.

“The question is how much will it cost to purchase a new transmitter that Ukah has used all these millions of naira to carry out only repairs on these transmitters. The stations can not boast of Outside Broadcast Vans, the staff are not working in a conducive environment, no good equipment and tools to work with, yet Ukah, was lavishing all this millions of naira on frivolous things that have no positive impact on the stations.”, the director said.

Some of the staff of the two state owned media houses in Asaba and Warri who spoke with our correspondent under the condition of anonymity, lamented the current state of the two stations, which they described as a state of “comatose” saying that four years have gone, yet no succour for the near moribund Delta Broadcasting Service (DBS), Asaba, (DRTV), Warri and the Pointer Newspapers, Asaba.

“It is a big shame to an oil rich state like Delta that has always topped the lists of highest receipt of federal monthly allocations running into hundreds of billions of naira with nothing to show.
Times without number we have demands for a more better working environment and equipment, but the state governor, Ifeanyi Okowa and the state commissioner for information, Patrick Ukah, have vehemently refused to pay attention to our demands.

“The way and manner governor Ifeanyi Okowa and the information commissioner, Patrick Ukah have neglected and abandoned the state owned media houses is so worrisome and you will be shocked how the governor and the commissioner waste millions of naira on private owned media houses for live coverage of events while leaving the two state owned media houses to go into extinction.

“The two stations can not boast of Outside Broadcast Vans (O.B Vans) used for live events, but rather will spend millions to hire private owned media houses for live coverage of events in the state. After four years, the government media houses are still in comatose, still in shambles, still in slumber and horrible working condition, you see us staff complaining here and there, suffering from bad working environment, what a big shame and disgrace to an oil rich state like Delta.

“Is this not shocking to hear that a whole DBS, Asaba and Warri still go out to hire cameras to carry out their official duties. In the News department, a full broadcasting outfit like DBS, Asaba, and Warri, there are no vehicles, studios in a very terrible and disarray state where cut and nail jobs are carried out and the governor and the commissioner are not bothered. The state government can not beat its chest and tell Deltans that actually they really mean well for these media houses.” one of the staff lamented.

Another senior staff of the station in Warri who does not want her name mentioned stated that “The equipment been used in DRTV in Warri are now obsolete compared to the current modern standard of broadcasting. A visit to AIT, Channels, and Silver Bird Television Stations in Lagos , you will agree with me that Deltans deserve more than a befitting media houses looking at the monthly federal allocation accruing to the oil rich Delta state. The Pointer Newspapers, DBS Asaba and DRTV Warri are gradually going into extinction.

“It is a big shame that for a state like Delta blessed with enormous human and material resources, cut and nail works are still been carried out in its TV and Radio stations even the Pointer Newspapers and the workers work in a very terrible environment, what about the several days the radio station will go off the air and upon all of these, Okowa and Ukah feel unconcerned.

“It beats ones imagination if actually the Okowa government really knows all what dissemination of information is all about or the vital roles of government owned media. On August 27, 2018, Delta state clocked 27 years and in this digital and computer age, the state cannot boast of standard media houses to showcase its activities, what a big shame and disgrace.

“What a disgrace and big shame to Ukah, when Deltans were expecting that his appointment would at least bring succour and face lift to the state owned media houses, after four years in office the state of the POINTER Newspapers, DBS, Asaba and DRTV Warri have become worst. Every year millions of naira is budgeted for the three media houses, yet the failed and inexperienced commissioner, Ukah, cannot give the stations a life line.”

When our correspondent visited the state information commissioner, Patrick Ukah, in his office along Summit road, Asaba before departure to Lagos, Ukah, was not on seat as he was said to have traveled to Port Harcourt, the Rivers state capital for an AGM meeting and when calls and test messages were sent to the information commissioner, there was response as at press time.

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Bribena, others fingered in fresh plot to blackmail Amnesty Programme boss, Prof. Dokubo



The Special Adviser to the President on Niger Delta and Co-odinator Presidential Amnesty Programme, Prof. Charles Quaker Dokubo, has alleged that one pastor Miebi Bribena, a contractor with the amnesty office has connived with a director of finance and account in the same office, Mr. Ilem Ukam to blackmail him. Amnesty Prof. Charles Dokubo

Describing as total “blackmail and defamation of his character,” reports against him allegedly sponsored by the duo of Bribena and Ukam, the Amnesty Boss, in a statement through the office of his Special Adviser on Niger Delta, Wednesday, accused Bribena of misappropriating the funds meant for the completion of some contracts including the construction of Oil and Gas Vocational Training Centre, Agadagba and the Maritime Vocational Training institute, Obuama.


The statement called on the office of the Presidential Amnesty Programme to call Pastor Bribena to order through constitutional means.

The statement reads thus:

It has come to notice of the office of the Special Adviser on Niger Delta to the President and Co-ordinator, Presidential Amnesty Programme, Prof. Charles Quaker Dokubo of the activities of one Pastor Miebi Bribena, a contractor with the amnesty office, who has connived with other persons including the Director of Finance and Accounts in the Amnesty Office, Mr. Ilem Ukam to blackmail the amnesty boss.

It all started when Pastor Miebi Bribena who is also an architect was awarded the contract of the construction of Oil and Gas Vocational Training Centre, Agadagba and the Maritime Vocational Training Institute, Obuama simultaneously by the Kuku-led-Amnesty Office. Pastor was mobilized 98% upfront to execute the jobs. The Agadagba Centre was 60% near completion before it was stopped, but for the timely intervention of Prof. Charles Quaker Dokubo on assumption of office it was completed and commissioned recently. The Obuama Centre was way behind schedule and abandoned with just 20% completion after the release of N2.4 billion naira for a job of such magnitude.

General Boroh, Prof. Dokubo’s predecessor, was tricked into believing that it was the differential in prices, because of the prevailing inflation, that was delaying the job; the balance of funds was released for him to complete the job, Pastor Miebi Bribena did not go to site and diverted the money for his personal use. On assumption of office, Prof. Dokubo called up the Obuama file and was shocked at the discrepancies and numbers that did not add up. Pastor Bribena was invited to clear the air, he was asking for differential in prices again, which was seen as an absurdity. The amount he quoted as differential was equivalent to the original amount quoted for the job, couple with the fact that, he was incoherent and belligerent in his responses. A team was sent to Obuama to evaluate what has been done and was shell-shocked on the state of the structure.

The findings were quite revealing:
1) The foundation of the Obuama Centre was good but the superstructure was an admixture of substandard and standard materials, e. g. blocks, columns were of substandard materials among others.

2) The N2.4 billion naira released for the project was not commensurate with the level of work done.

3) Building materials were diverted for personal use by Bribena

4) Pastor Bribena was busy building houses for some stakeholders in the Niger Delta in order to buy them over in the event of any discovery of shortcomings in the execution of the Obuama project. Those mouths have been sealed since the Obuama project scam came up.

5) The community secondary school Obuama only source of recreation-the football field–was damaged when trucks bearing building materials rode on the field. Pastor Miebi Bribena is yet to take responsibility for this damage.

6) Experts feel the building might collapse under immense pressure of human movement sooner than expected.

7) Hostels and staff quarters have not been built.
8) The jetty for the Maritime institute has not been built among others.

9) The 165 feet deep well for deep sea diving training has not being built among other ancillaries.

9) Accusations of impropriety were also made against Pastor Miebi Bribena by some indigenes of Obuama who did business with him.

Prof. Charles Quaker Dokubo was not comfortable with the findings and other unethical developments and decided to put everything on hold pastor Miebi Bribena’s request for more money.

This was the beginning of Pastor Miebi Bribena’s running battle with the Amnesty office. He enlisted the services of the director of finance and account in the amnesty office, Mr. Ilem Ukam to cause problem in the Niger Delta region with aim of heating up the polity which invariably will lead to the removal of Prof. Dokubo as the amnesty office boss.

Video and audio recordings of Pastor Miebi Bribena verbally insulting Prof. Dokubo were made to go viral. Prior to this time Pastor Miebi Bribena, Mr. Ilem Ukam and a group had orchestrated the looting of Kaiama training where items worth billions of naira were carted away.

To add salt to injury, Bribena has been bragging to all who would listen hear that he single-handedly removed General Boroh, Prof. Charles Dokubo will go in like manner, then a Special Adviser on Niger Delta and coordinator of the amnesty of his choice will be chosen.

The general public should be put on notice that:
i) Pastor Bribena was so privileged to have been given three choice contracts to build three training centres in Ondo, Rivers and Bayelsa respectively; these centres all have issues of non-completion with severe structural defects. The Oil and Gas Vocational Training Centre, Agadagba was remedied by Prof. Charles Dokubo on assumption of office and consequently commissioned to be put to use. The Maritime Vocational Training Centre, Obuama has been abandoned but funds were provided.

ii) The reason Miebi Bribena could not complete these projects, most especially the Maritime Vocational Training Institute, Obuama, Rivers State, was due largely to his insatiable desire for money and power. He diverted the funds for the project to the pursuance of his political career, which failed even before he began the journey.

iii) He lives in faraway Ghana, but delights in fomenting trouble in the Niger Delta as a distraction from the main issue. In the event of any crisis caused by his incendiary comments in the region his family is safe in foreign land, while unsuspecting innocent ones will become casualties.

iv) The youths of the region should hold Miebi Bribena accountable for the non-completion of the Maritime Vocational Training Centre, Obuama in Rivers State. One man has decided to derail the hard-earned peace progress in the region, in order to feed his ego, greed and criminality. His children attend Ivy League schools abroad and the institute that would help transform the children of less-privileged in the region has been abandoned by Pastor Miebi Bribena.

v) It was gathered from the grapevine that he diverted some of the building materials meant for Obuama projects to some of the construction sites of his church (Christ Embassy in Port-Harcourt and Yenagoa respectively) to boost his status symbol as a man of God.

Without much ado, we call on the office of the Presidential Amnesty Programme to call Pastor Bribena to order through constitutional means. It is either he finishes the project at Obuama or face the wrath of the aggrieved Niger Delta youths. This man is a fraud and must be arrested.

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CORRUPTION: NIRSAL boils as MD, Abdulhammed allegedly turns agency into family business



–      Appoints son major contractor, brother as TA in-charge of procurement

–      As fresh N342m financial scandal rocks agency


Fresh crisis is currently rocking the Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agriculture Lending (NIRSAL) over allegations of corruption, fraud and lack of transparency by its managing director, Mr. Aliyu Abbati Abdulhammed.

NIRSAL, an initiative of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), the Bankers Committee (BC) and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development (FMA&RD), incorporated as a public limited liability company (PLC) and licensed as a non-bank financial institution (NBFI) is tasked with the primary mandate of facilitating the flow of credit to agribusiness value chain players and collaborating with stakeholders to fix broken agricultural value chains in Nigeria.

As against the mandate of NIRSAL, the managing director, Mr. Abdulhammed is said to have turned the agency into his family business favouring his family members and friends. He is alleged to have appointed his younger brother, Babangida Abdulhammed as his technical assistant, handling all procurement related matters, effectively usurping the functions of the procurement department of NIRSAL. Sources alleged that Babangida singlehandedly decides how contracts are awarded at NIRSAL and who gets them.

As if that was not enough, the son of the managing director, Imran Abdulhammed, is the sole supplier of office equipment including desktop computers, laptops, etc. at exorbitant prices.

Investigations also revealed that the managing director circumvents the usual routes in procurement. A staff of the apex bank, who is one of his relatives, has been fingered in some wild infractions including backdating of documentations for several monies that had been spent to secure board approvals. It was further learnt that Mr. Abdulhammed singlehandedly appoints contractors who work with the company. Nextzone, Blue Accord, Global Knowledge consulting are some of the firms allegedly linked to him by sources.

The lack of transparency in the workings of the NIRSAL leaves much to be desired. Besides the fact that it makes nonsense of the president’s anti-corruption crusade, it further exposes the current government’s inability to adequately monitor public officers. For instance, contrary to government’s directive placing ban on foreign trainings, NIRSAL had sent some staff on trainings abroad, including a particular one in South Africa, described as jamboree by a member of staff who was part of the training.

“It was a shabby exercise and a total waste of public resources,” the staff said. He is also accused of flying in first class on foreign airlines. Amongst other things, the managing director was accused of not keeping adequate records of financial transactions and commitments relating to inflow, expenditure and disbursements. NIRSAL has accumulated bad credit guarantees running into billions of naira, while the farmers are yet to benefit.

Another issue causing ripples in the agency is how the managing director allegedly misappropriated a princely N342 million released to NIRSAL by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) under its Anchor Borrowers’ programme (ABP) for a Southwest maize farmers’ cooperative, Hope Concept Investment Cooperatives and Credit Union.

The fund, which was approved by the Central Bank of Nigeria and released in July last year to NIRSAL, for onward disbursement to about 1,800 small holders’ farmers that make up the union, was for preparation of land and planting of maize during the rainy season.

The CBN had reportedly credited NIRSAL on July 18 and 19, 2018 with a first tranche of N246,523,120:00 but instead of NIRSAL to remit the fund to the bona fide farmers who were registered with and approved by the CBN as beneficiaries, Abdulhammed directed that the fund be transferred to NIRSAL’s operations office in Abeokuta.

It was learnt that Abdulhammed tweaked the mandate of NIRSAL from risk management to operating as a commercial bank. The concerned farmers were asked to apply afresh for the fund as a loan, a development they kicked against.

The concerned maize farmers/beneficiaries were subsequently subjected to a long delay that NIRSAL masterminded through a series of unnecessary meetings, trainings and workshops while the fund was idle in NIRSAL’s account, attracting huge interest. Sources familiar with the development hinted that many weeks, which the farmers would have used to deploy in the farms were lost, a development that disrupted timelines for cultivation and harvest of maize for off-taking by companies that make use of maize in the production of their goods.

The off-takers, the biggest of them being the Flour Mills Plc had to source for maize (raw materials) from other farmers when the beneficiary farmers under the aegis of Hope Concept Investment Cooperatives and Credit Union could not meet up with the timelines for supply of maize.

Investigations further revealed that while the concerned southwest farmers waited in vain for their respective accounts to be credited with the funds, officials of NIRSAL asked the farmers to part with some of the funds before disbursing.

Due to the alleged corrupt practices of the NIRSAL officials, the farmers lost over N600 million, excluding funds spent on clearing the lands, interest on loans and other costs. Upon approval of Hope Concept’s request, the group also fulfilled the payment of a requisite N16 million equity counterpart funding, which is five per cent of the financing.

We gathered that the farmers were supposed to supply about 6,000 MT of maize to Flour Mills Plc. One of the concerned southwest maize farmers alleged ethnic bias and deliberate promotion of a northern economic expansionist agenda against Abdulhammed who hails from Adamawa State and whose appointment was said to have been influenced by the first lady, Mrs. Aisha Buhari.

Consequently, it became difficult for senior officials in the apex bank to rein in on Abdulhammed over his questionable act and other impunities including misappropriation of funds and abuse of processes in the contract awards.

Meanwhile, the farmers are demanding compensation for time lost, funds spent on clearing the lands, other financial costs including the counterpart funding and interest on loans. NIRSAL under the current leadership has huge reputational problems as it has also been accused of withholding a N1 billion intervention fund in Owerri, Imo State and another in Delta State. At a public event recently in Abuja, farmers from Kojoli Farms in Jada, Adamawa, called for the overhauling of NIRSAL, citing large-scale corruption in the running of the affairs of the organization. The lack of transparency in the workings of the NIRSAL leaves much to be desired. Besides the fact that it makes nonsense of the president’s anti-corruption crusade, it further exposes the current government’s inability to adequately monitor public officers.



In our fact-finding mission, The Witness contacted the managing director of NIRSAL, Mr. Aliyu Abdulhammed for his and the agency’s angle to the allegations.

In a statement sent to The Witness by the agency’s Head of Corporate Communications, Anne Ihugba, the managing director reeled out the mandate of NIRSAL but declined comment on the allegations raised by our reporter.

Read the full statement below:

Over the past few weeks, there has been an intensification of longstanding attacks against NIRSAL and its current management by entrenched interests and other hostile elements who do not mean well for the country.

The obvious objective of the campaign is to halt the momentum of progress that NIRSAL, working with public and private sector partners, is making in transforming the Nigerian agricultural economy in order to boost productivity, food security and the welfare of the teeming millions of smallholder farmers around the country. We are certain that they will fail.

The attacks are also characterized by desperate efforts to distort and misrepresent NIRSAL’s mandate, role and achievements. For the avoidance of doubt, NIRSAL is a policy tool of the Central Bank of Nigeria deliberately designed as a self-sustaining company with the sole aim of achieving the public good by catalyzing and guaranteeing private finance and investment to the agricultural sector.

NIRSAL’s operations are characterized by the highest standards of good governance and professionalism and these are delivering solid dividends to the agricultural sector and the national economy as can be seen below:

NIRSAL is an investee company of the CBN, a going concern incorporated under the Companies & Allied Matters Act (CAMA) and governed by all standard governance and reporting rules of public liability companies applicable nationally and globally.

Following from the above, NIRSAL files its annual financials every year at the CAC as required by the Companies and Allied Matters Act. Therefore, NIRSAL operates by the highest standards of corporate governance rules coupled with capital preservation and capital growth objectives in order to maintain a robust balance sheet against which it issues its guarantees, provides technical assistance and builds capacities and incentivizes borrowers and lenders in the agriculture finance space.

NIRSAL’s accounts are prepared in accordance with the International Financial Reporting Standards and audited by Board-approved independent auditors.

NIRSAL’s Board comprises a broad spectrum of respected high profile professionals representing the CBN, Bankers Committee (CEOs of DMBs in Nigeria), the Organized Private Sector (OPS), the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Department (FMARD).

NIRSAL’s operations are solely funded from earnings derived from its meticulously invested seed capital. And, as a result of astute management of its finite resources by its Management, NIRSAL has not only retained its original investment capital but has also more than doubled its balance sheet while

paying its staff salaries and covering its operating expenditures without recourse to any external source of funding. This is a testament to the prudence exercised by the current leadership of NIRSAL.

It’s also to the credit of NIRSAL’s Management that it has maintained a very healthy crystallized Guarantee ratio of about one percent on its Credit Risk Guarantees against the financial industry average that at a point reached 17%.

The bottom line is that NIRSAL is doing justice to its core mandate of serving the public good 100% while preserving and growing its balance sheet.

It is incontrovertible that in just three years, with the robust support of the CBN, NIRSAL has set up strong processes and structures including offices across the country and global partnerships, facilitated significant funding to the agricultural sector and made measurable impact on the lives of hundreds of thousands of beneficiary farmers and other players along the various agricultural value chains.

NIRSAL has made measurable progress in reducing the risks to financing institutions while granting agricultural loans by building the capacities of both banks & investors and agricultural value chain actors on good practices in agricultural production, financing, loans/investment utilization and repayment.

NIRSAL has facilitated funds in excess of N85.5 billion for various agriculture sector projects from various sources as at Q3 2018.

Broken down, this translates to the following investments: Agricultural Inputs: N43.8 Billion; Mechanization: N1.7 Billion; Primary Production: N19 Billion; Processing: N20.9 Billion.

Interms of broad impact, this translates to 373,752 direct jobs and 1.8 Million indirect jobs facilitated by NIRSAL.

Having completed our corporate establishment phase within the last 3 years, the agriculture finance space, from 2019 and beyond, should see a rapid scale out of NIRSAL’s interventions on 15 Industrial, Export, Domestic Consumer, Youth-specific and Livestock Agricultural Commodity value chains in Nigeria.

Our core inspiration continues to be the Federal Government’s focus on the agricultural sector and the targets set out in the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan and the Agriculture Promotion Policy.

We also owe our accomplishments, sound fundamentals and rigorous processes to the leadership provided by the Central Bank of Nigeria under Mr. Godwin Emefiele.

While there is still a lot to be done, there is no doubt that we have made definite progress in delivering our core mandate to enable the flow of affordable financing and investments to all players across entire agricultural value chains.

Our focus on improving community and individual lives along the many agricultural value chains that we are working on remains strong. And we will keep working — harder – with all partner organizations to deliver more measurable results.

That is our pledge and our commitment.

Signed: Management


-Additional report by Per Second News

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