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FirstBank employees lift partially sighted, down syndrome children

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Still in the spirit of the 2018 Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability Week (CR&S), themed ‘Touching Lives; You First’, employees of First Bank of Nigeria Limited recently shared moments with physically challenged children in Lagos and also presented numerous foodstuffs and toiletries to them. The CSR activity which took place all over Nigeria and other Africa countries where FirstBank is located through its subsidiary; FBNBank had staff visit orphanages; homes for the physically challenged, and other institutions that require support across the country. These subsidiaries include, FBNBank in the Republic of Congo, Ghana, The Gambia, Guinea, Sierra-Leone and Senegal,

Defying the torrential rain, the top-level management staff, on Saturday, June 23, 2018, visited Pacelli School for the Blind and Partially Sighted Children, and the Down Syndrome Foundation of Nigeria in Surulere, Lagos respectively to interact with the pupils and also presented food, health and sanitary items contributed by the staff of the bank to them.

Similarly, the Bank presented foodstuff and other materials to orphanage babies home at Anua in Uyo and Generate of Handmaid of Holy Child of Jesus motherless home Ifuho Ikot Ekpene local government area of Akwa Ibom, with a view to giving the children a sense of belonging.

In Abuja, it was the same story as Al Ansar Orphanage Home and Abuja School for the Handicap, both in the Kuje Area Council of the FCT, Abuja, also received essential materials.

Expressing appreciation on behalf of management and pupils of Pacelli School for the Blind and Partially Sighted Children, the Headmistress, Sister Jane Onyeneri, thanked FirstBank for the kind gesture and the timely gifts.

She added that the school founded on June 16, 1962 and owned by the Catholic Arch-Diocese of Lagos, accommodates 140 pupils, adding that it is a non-denominational institution.

“The school offers the pupils free tuition, free feeding and free accommodation. So, we really appreciate FirstBank’s timely intervention and consider it an act of kindness that will go a long way in ensuring the school continues to do this”, Onyeneri stated.

Speaking on behalf of the FirstBank team, the Group Executive, Retail Banking, Lagos and West, Tunde Owolabi, said: “FirstBank Corporate Responsibility and Sustainable Week is set aside to promote acts of random kindness and create opportunities for staff to give their time and resources to defined courses in line with the bank’s Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability strategic approach.”

He disclosed further that ‘Hope Rising’ initiative is one of the key programmes of the Bank designed to empower people living with disabilities. “Its key objective is engendering inclusivity and diversity through training as well as inclusive events. The partnership with Pacelli School falls under the Hope Rising platform and this includes support in cash and kind”, Owolabi noted.

Touched by the show of appreciation in the emotion-laden sonorous songs rendered by the pupils, Owolabi went ahead to make a personal donation to the school, while appealing to other well-meaning Nigerians to render assistance to the needy. The FirstBank team also promised to send representatives and more gifts at the school’s graduation taking place on July 12, 2018.

The FirstBank team that visited Pacelli School for the Blind, comprised the Head, Alternative Workforce, Yinka Folorunsho, and Head, Talent Management, Muyiwa Olulaja, amongst others.

Apart from visiting and donating to orphanages/ less privileged homes and IDPs, the other four key initiatives of the FirstBank’s CR&S are Career Counselling for secondary school students, commemoration of the UN International Widow’s Day in partnership with the International Women Society, and Staff Promoting Acts of Random Kindness (SPARK) initiative designed to encourage people to be kind and uphold values. First Bank of Nigeria Limited is also in partnership with Vision Spring to empower people with impaired vision by providing eyeglasses and lens at very affordable rates.

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BUSINESS

CBN, NDIC inject 786bn into Polaris Bank (defunct Skye Bank)

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The Central Bank of Nigeria in conjunction with the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has injected N786bn into the Polaris Bank, (The defunct Skye Bank).

Recall that following the withdrawal of the operating licence of Skye Bank Plc, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), established Polaris Bank, a bridge bank to assume the  ownership of the assets, all deposit liabilities and some other liabilities of Skye Bank.

Godwin Emefiele, (middle), announcing the death of Skye Bank and birth of Polaris Bank in Lagos on Friday

CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, who disclosed this on Friday, said the strategy was for the Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) to capitalise the bridge bank and begin the process of sourcing investors to buy out AMCON.

“By this decision, the licence of the defunct Skye Bank is hereby revoked.

We wish to assure all depositors that under this arrangement, their deposits shall remain safe and that normal banking services shall continue in the new bank on Monday, 24th September, 2018, to enable customers to transact their businesses seamlessly.

“Thus, all customers of Skye Bank shall be automatic customers of the new bank and their accounts and records duly purchased by Polaris Bank,” Emefiele explained.

The CBN chief further noted that the existing Board, Management and Staff of the defunct Skye Bank has been retained for its good performance whilst the CBN also assures depositors and customers of the safety of their funds.

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Polaris Bank takes over Skye Bank, CBN assures depositors

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Following the withdrawal of the operating licence of Skye Bank Plc, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in consultation with the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC), has established a bridge bank known as Polaris Bank, to assume the assets and liabilities of the defunct bank.

CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, who disclosed this on Friday, said the strategy was for the Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) to capitalise the bridge bank and begin the process of sourcing investors to buy out AMCON.

“By this decision, the licence of the defunct Skye Bank is hereby revoked.

We wish to assure all depositors that under this arrangement, their deposits shall remain safe and that normal banking services shall continue in the new bank on Monday, 24th September, 2018, to enable customers to transact their businesses seamlessly.

“Thus, all customers of Skye Bank shall be automatic customers of the new bank and their accounts and records duly purchased by Polaris Bank,” Emefiele explained.

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Nigeria’s foreign debt hits $22bn

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The country’s foreign and domestic debts stood at $22.08bn and N15.63tn, respectively at the end of the second quarter of this year, according to figures released by the National Bureau of Statistics.

Figures from the NBS obtained by our correspondent on Thursday revealed that Lagos State had the largest share of the foreign and local debts among the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory.

The NBS stated, “The Nigerian states and federal debt stock data as of 30th of June, 2018 reflected that the country’s foreign and domestic debts stood at $22.08bn and N15.63tn, respectively. Further disaggregation of Nigeria’s foreign debt showed that $10.88bn of the debt was multilateral; $274.98m was bilateral (AFD) and another $2.12bn bilateral from the Exim Bank of China, JICA, India and KFW, while $8.80bn was commercial.

“Lagos State has the highest foreign debt profile among the 36 states and the FCT, accounting for 34.17 per cent, while Edo (6.57 per cent), Kaduna (5.48 per cent), Cross River (4.56 per cent) and Bauchi (3.18 per cent), followed closely.

“Similarly, the total domestic debt was N3.48tn, with Lagos State accounting for 14.88 per cent of the total domestic debt stock, while Anambra State has the least debt in this category with a contribution of 0.08 per cent to the total domestic debt stock.”

On the domestic debt stock of the states and the FCT, the NBS data revealed that Lagos owed N517.367bn; Delta, N222.680bn; Akwa Ibom, N179.714bn; while Kaduna had N75.606bn.

The statistics also revealed that Abia owed N57.467bn; Adamawa, N67.460bn; Anambra, N2.612bn; Bauchi, N78.076bn; and Bayelsa, N123.031bn.

The NBS statistics further revealed that the Federal Government’s domestic debt stock totalled N12.151tn during the period under review.

A breakdown of the figure showed that FGN Bonds amounted to N8.927tn or 73.47 per cent; Nigerian Treasury Bills totalled N2.953tn or 24.31 per cent; Nigerian Treasury Bonds, N150.988bn or 1.24 per cent; while the FGN Savings Bond was N8.521bn or 0.07 per cent.

Others are FGN Sukuk of N100bn or 0.82 per cent and FGN Green Bond of N10.690bn or 0.09 per cent.

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