Burnt mall: Lagos traders to get tax break, financial support – Newstrends
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Burnt mall: Lagos traders to get tax break, financial support

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Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has promised to assist tenants and shop owners who suffered huge losses in the recent looting and burning of the Circle Mall by hoodlums in Lekki in the aftermath of the #EndSARS protest.

 The governor said this during a condolence visit and meeting with the tenants and shop owners at the mall, offering to give them a tax break and some financial assistance, according to a statement by Sanwo-Olu’s Chief Press Secretary, Gboyega Akosile.

It would be recalled that some hoodlums went on the rampage on Wednesday October 21, after the EndSARS protests and looted property worth billions of naira at the Circle Mall and set parts of the building ablaze.

Speaking on his administration’s readiness to assist those affected by destruction at the mall, Governor Sanwo-Olu said the state government would not leave the people to bear the pains alone, noting that government would assist them to return to their business.

The governor said the state government would give all business owners in the burnt Circle Mall tax break of PAYE and appealed to the Federal Government to ensure that they get tax relief from the Federal Internal Revenue Service (FIRS).

Governor Sanwo-Olu said the state government would give victims of the Circle Mall financial support, which would be in form of grant or loans to cushion the effect of the looting and destruction of their respective shops and stores.

Sanwo-Olu said the grant support would be a non-refundable financial support to the victims.

He said the affected businesses were not expected to pay back while the lending support would be in form of a loan, adding that he was already discussing with some financial institutions to assist people with zero interest loans.

Sanwo-Olu also asked the shop owners to reach out to the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF) and urged them to make use of the opportunities being provided by the agency in assisting people in business, especially small-scale businesses.

The governor further implored people on reorientation of value system and civil responsibility for everybody to be agent of positive change in their community and anywhere they found themselves.

Reiterating his administration’s commitment to security of lives and property in the state, Sanwo-Olu said that Lagos State would no longer tolerate hoodlums looting and destroying government and private businesses and properties.

He said though Lagos State Government could not stop people from coming into the state, the governor warned people with criminal intentions to go elsewhere before being smoked out by the government.

The governor said his government was ready to encourage people who are in Lagos for business and would go extra mile to protect businesses in the state.

Speaking earlier, the tenants at Circle Mall thanked Governor Sanwo-Olu for showing empathy in the face of daunting challenges.

They asked him to assist them financially so as to get back on their feet.

They also appealed to Lagos State Government to strengthen security around the Circle Mall to prevent future occurrence of the two attacks they suffered in the last 13 months.

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Kano anti-corruption agency slams fresh charges against Ganduje

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Abdullahi Ganduje

Kano anti-corruption agency slams fresh charges against Ganduje

The Kano State Anti-Corruption and Public Complaints Commission has filed a fresh corruption charges against former Governor of Kano Abdullahi Ganduje.

The commission’s chairman, Muhuyi Magaji disclosed this in an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily programme on Tuesday.

According to Magaji, investigations uncovered the diversion of N51.3 billion from local government funds to unauthorized individuals during Ganduje’s tenure.

Magaji alleged that the Ganduje administration withdrew N1 billion monthly from state coffers before its tenure ended in May 2023, purportedly for road renovation, but diverted to Bureau de Change operators instead.

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He also cited a case involving N4 billion transferred to an agricultural company from Kano’s consolidated revenue account.

“What is happening now is a tip of the iceberg. As I am talking to you, we are investigating a case whereby N51.3bn local government funds were directly taken from the government coffers (and) sent to other individuals, and we traced it to people.

“We have filed a series of cases. We have a case whereby N1bn in April last year (2023) was removed from government coffers under the allocation of renovating 30 roads in the metropolis, and it was taken away and sent to Bureau de Change.

“We have a case of N4bn whereby it was sent from the consolidated revenue account of Kano State to an agricultural company. All these cases are before the court,” he said.

Recall that the state government has said it will arraign Ganduje, alongside his wife and son, for money laundering, later this week.

Kano anti-corruption agency slams fresh charges against Ganduje

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Ooni of Ife dismisses agitators of Yoruba nation

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Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi

Ooni of Ife dismisses agitators of Yoruba nation

The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, on Tuesday, urged Nigerians to ignore the Yoruba nation agitators, who invaded the Oyo State government secretariat last week, describing them as attention seekers.

He also insisted that the agitators do not represent the interest of the Yoruba race.

Speaking when he received in audience members of the Yoruba Council Worldwide, who paid him a courtesy visit at his lodge in Eko Hotels, Victoria Island in Lagos to inform him of the sixth annual Omoluwabi festival which holds on April 27- 28, 2024, in Ile Ife and the grand finale holding in Lagos at LTV 8 Blue roof on May 1, 2024, the monarch commended the president of Yoruba Council Aare Oladotun Hassan for promoting Yoruba culture and extolling the good virtues Yoruba are known for.

Oba Ogunwusi, however, advised Nigerians not to give the Yoruba nation agitators any attention.

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He said: “We should not give those people relevance, they are achieving their aims just to seek attention,we are having challenges here and there in the country, this administration is really trying her best.

“Under President Bola Tinubu, he is doing very well, he is doing exceptionally well, by trying to fix the economy,we should give him benefit of doubt and also to engage people, very important we should be engaging people to talk to others about success recorded by the government in power.

“For us, we will continue to uphold and support the government, to support the president to ensure everything he does is to our advantage not as a race, but to our advantage as a nation, irrespective of where you come from Yoruba land or anywhere.”

Speaking on the importance of organising the Omoluwabi day, the president of the organisation, Mr Hassan said the essence is to rekindle the fast dieing Yoruba morals and values and as well inculcate it into the youths.

He said: “Yoruba Council Worldwide is registered organisation with Corporate Affairs Commission with vocal point of promotion of Yoruba cradles Omoluwabi ethos, National development, ensuring due dividend of democracy.

“The organisation was established 18th March 1999,just celebrating the sixth edition of world omoluwabi day.

it is a unique day, every May 1 declared by the Ooni of Ife, Oba Ogunwusi and late Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, the late Alaafin of Oyo. We receive countless of support from all the monarcs in Yoruba land, and this to us is an engagement and conversation to rekindle that Omoluwabi ethos that is fast dying in our society.”

Ooni of Ife dismisses agitators of Yoruba nation

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Jubilation as FG begins disbursement of N200bn palliative loans

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Doris Uzoka-Anite, Minister for Trade and Investment

Jubilation as FG begins disbursement of N200bn palliative loans

The Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment says it has begun disbursement of the Presidential Conditional Grant Scheme to verified applicants after an exhaustive selection process.

The government, through the Bank of Industry, had said it would be disbursing three categories of funding totalling N200bn to support manufacturers and businesses across the country.

In a progress report posted on the trade minister’s official X (formerly Twitter) handle on Tuesday, Doris Aniete stated that an unspecified number of beneficiaries have received their grants, adding that by Friday, April 19, another significant disbursement will be made to a substantial number of verified applicants.

She said, “We are pleased to inform you that the disbursement process for the Presidential Conditional Grant Programme has officially commenced. Some beneficiaries have already received their grants, marking the beginning of our phased disbursement strategy.”

“By Friday, 19th April 2024, a significant disbursement will be made to a substantial number of verified applicants. It is essential to understand that disbursements are ongoing, and not all applicants will receive their grants on this initial date. However, rest assured that all verified applicants will eventually receive their grants in subsequent phases.”

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This is coming more than eight months after President Bola Tinubu announced the grant for manufacturers and small businesses and two weeks after applicants were directed to submit their National Identification Numbers as part of the requirements to obtain the grant earmarked to cushion the effect that recent economic reforms have had on businesses in the country.

In the address, the president said he was determined to strengthen the manufacturing sector, increase its capacity to expand, and create good-paying jobs.

“We are going to spend N75bn between July 2023 and March 2024. Our objective is to fund 75 enterprises with great potential to kick-start sustainable economic growth, accelerate structural transformation, and improve productivity.

‘’Each of the 75 manufacturing enterprises will be able to access N1bn credit at 9 per cent per annum with a maximum of 60 months repayment for long-term loans and 12 months for working capital,” Tinubu said.

The programme, riddled with multiple delays and a complex registration process, had received several criticisms from prospective beneficiaries.

The President of the Association of Small Business Owners, Femi Egbesola, had decried the slow pace of data collation by the supervising agencies, alleging that genuine businesses were being deliberately discouraged from accessing the loans.

Jubilation as FG begins disbursement of N200bn palliative loans

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