It’s not very often that a sitting central bank governor is lauded by throngs of singing and dancing supporters, but backers of CBN governor Godwin Emefiele may have just made history at this weekend’s APC national convention.
The political theatre, whether organic or facilitated, is a quirky tribute to a technocrat whose celebrity status usually doesn’t stretch past the Davos city limits. In a crowded field of candidates for the APC’s presidential nominee, however, it’s unsurprisingly necessary to pull out all the stops to get ahead of the pack.
Emefiele, for his part, has so far kept silent on whether he will formally run. While others are quick to throw their hats in the ring, the CBN governor appears to be taking the route of a diligent-but-humble public servant who may be pressured into running.
Although that path above the fray is well-trodden, Emefiele’s powerful, current position has ruffled plenty of feathers. In February, Premium Times ran an editorial calling on Emefiele to either resign and run, or remain in his post and repudiate any electoral ambitions.
Similarly, just days ago the main opposition party, the PDP, offered a 21-tweet salute accusing Emefiele of having “desecrated the sanctity of his office as CBN Governor.” If the governor were to formally enter the arena of partisan politics, there would be intense pressure upon him to resign his tenure as the country’s top banker.
Aside from his powerful post, why does Emefiele draw so much lightning?
The APC is expected to select a candidate from the South for the 2023 ticket (some say the southwest, specifically, but that remains to be confirmed).
Born in Delta state, Emefiele is described as having “a candidature with South-South and Igbo background.” His professional experience is also strong. He came to the apex bank with 20 years of experience in the private sector, most notably as managing director of the household name Zenith Bank. Additionally, appointed under PDP president Goodluck Jonathan in 2014, Emefiele has worked with (and survived in his post under) governments led by both major parties.
This mix of fortuitous zoning happenstance, noteworthy private sector experience, and political longevity at the height of national politics makes Emefiele a serious contender. But no one plays in the big league for that long without controversy. Over the years, Emefiele has faced accusations of impropriety, lawlessness, and mismanagement.
And that’s all before he was considered a potential presidential candidate.
The glaring lacuna in Emefiele’s resume is electoral success. Rotimi Amaechi and Nasir El-Rufai—potential rival candidates within the APC—have both proven that they can win elections at the state-level. Is it necessary?
Well, both Umaru Yar’Adua (Katsina) and Goodluck Jonathan (Bayelsa) won gubernatorial elections before winning the presidency. But both Olusegun Obasanjo and Muhammadu Buhari served in unelected national-level positions, before eventually prevailing in nation-wide polls. If the APC ticket will indeed be led by a candidate from the south, could Emefiele be the next Obasanjo?
* Oliver McPherson-Smith, a Harvard Economist, writes from the USA
Henkel receives best Quality Cleaning Soaps Production Company of the year award
Henkel Nigeria, the maker of WAW and Nittol laundry detergents, has won the prestigious National Quality Excellence Award as the Best in Class Quality Cleaning Soaps Production Company of the Year.
It won in the category of Quality Excellence Award at the 2022 awards ceremony held on Friday, at the banquet hall of the Sheraton Hotels and Towers, Ikeja, Lagos.
The awards ceremony, which was organised by the Allied Integrated Promotion and Management Limited, a frontline Quantity Assessment and Promotion company had in attendance top government functionaries, CEOs and Quality Managers.
The event themed; ‘The Art and Science of Quality/Marketing’, explored the symbiotic relationship between human and science aspect of quality management.
The summit addressed soft skills, cultural consciousness and leadership offered alongside practical presentations, outlining leading-edge applications and technologies, which helped to bridge the gap between emotional and scientific intelligence, and advanced the quality community’s national standing as a comprehensive resource for progress, innovation and excellence.
Receiving the award, Henkel Head of Quality, Elijah Egbedeyi said that the recognition of Best in Class Quality Cleaning Soaps Production Company of the Year is testament to the company’s commitment towards ensuring that their products are made from the highest quality standards. He added that Henkel Nigeria aims to develop Nigeria-centric brands and products that are backed by global German product quality and reliability standards.
In 2016, Henkel acquired Expand Global Industries Limited (EGIL). Since then, Henkel has continuously invested in the improvement of the production tools and the SHE standards in its Ibadan site. Thus, contributing to satisfy the local demand in products that combine high performance, reliability, and quality.
Through an extensive local distributor network, Henkel provides thousands of jobs across the country as it aims to be a major contributor to the Nigerian economy while supporting its driving forces and empowering talents with the ultimate ambition to produce for Nigerians by Nigerians.
Henkel celebrates World Day for Safety and Health, reiterates commitment to staff safety
In celebration of the annual World Day for Safety and Health at Work, Henkel Nigeria has reiterated its commitment to workplace safety, which has been an integral part of the company’s corporate culture for decades.
Roman Rylyk, Henkel Nigeria Plant Manager said that the detergent maker is fully aligned with the theme of the 2022 World Day for Safety and Health at Work; ‘Act together to build a positive safety and health culture’. “At Henkel, our purpose is Pioneers at heart for the good of generations. This is built from our roots and carries a long-standing legacy of innovation, responsibility, and sustainability into the future. Leveraging on the health and safety of our workers is central to the sustainability of our business,” explains Rylyk.
He said that the company does this with the provision of a safe and healthy work environment for the workforce and the collaborative notion of one worker being responsible for the safety of the other.
Rylyk further said, “Safety is our utmost priority in our daily operations. We manage, design, and operate our facilities to maximize safety…this includes continuous investment in the improvement of the production tools and SHE standards in our plant”.
As a multinational company, Henkel has been able to leverage off of its global best practice to ensure it has a systemic and well-structured local strategy when it comes to safety standards.
Rylyk asserted that this consists of, but not limited to, full compliance to local regulation and corporate standards, as well as providing technical solutions to protecting high risk industrial equipment and training their employees on safety requirements and safe operating procedures.
Staff are trained multiple times a year on machine handling, safety protocols, coupled with a high level of safety governance and supervision. It is mandatory for all onsite employees to be fully equipped with personnel protect equipment at all times, said Jennifer Ikuenobe, Henkel Nigeria Human Resources Manager.
Henkel remains committed to complying with the various Nigerian Labour and Workplace Health and Safety laws by providing a safe working environment for its employees, third-party workers, and contractors.
The annual World Day for Safety and Health at Work on 28 April promotes the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases globally as the 2022 edition focuses on enhancing social dialogue towards a culture of safety and health.
MainOne expands, launches MDXi Lekki II Data Center
Lagos continues to take the lead in growing digital investments across Africa with the recent launch of MainOne’s new Data Center, “Lekki II” by the Executive Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu. Following closely on the heels of its acquisition by Equinix, the world’s digital infrastructure company, the new data center will drive the acceleration of digital services in the state.
Speaking at the launch event, the Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, commended MainOne on building digital infrastructure in line with his Government’s strategy to make Lagos State a 21st Century Smart City. He added that “Lagos is already on the map as the leading destination for technology companies on the African continent. Lagos is the commercial nerve center of the country and we will continue to create an enabling environment for businesses to flourish by ensuring our policies support investment and create opportunities for entrepreneurs and investors. We can see that Equinix is now poised not only to be the biggest digital infrastructure player in Nigeria but in Africa, and we welcome Equinix to the heartbeat of the country, the Centre of Excellence, the largest economy in Africa and the technology transformation hub of Africa”.
Other special dignitaries at the launch event included the Deputy Governor, Lagos State, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat; the Chairman of the Nigerian Communications Commission, Prof. Adeolu Akande who represented the Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Ali Pantami; the Commissioner Science and Technology for Lagos State Mr. Hakeem Fahm, Government dignitaries, Equinix Management and Corporate Executives from Nigeria and Ghana.
The CEO of MainOne, Funke Opeke in her welcome address expressed her excitement, “We are delighted to be expanding our Lekki Campus today to increase capacity in our region. Indeed, having a parent company that is the world’s digital company choose to enter Africa through the acquisition of MainOne is a bold statement. Equinix recognizes that Lagos has the potential to become the digital infrastructure hub for Africa and we are delighted that through this acquisition Equinix will extend its network of 240 data centers in 66 markets to Lagos. Our plans include further expansion to the Lekki Campus to accommodate the requirements of global hyperscalers and regional businesses as we expand to connect the over 10,000 companies already on the Equinix platform. These businesses will now have access to our region and local businesses will come onboard to interconnect with them.”.
The event included a tour of the Lekki II facility which was commissioned for service by the Governor after the ribbon cutting ceremony. Lekki II provides immediate room for growth on MainOne’s Lekki Data Center campus which is targeted for further expansion up to 10MW of data center capacity under the Equinix umbrella.
Judith Gardiner, VP Growth and Emerging Markets at Equinix welcomed MainOne as its latest acquisition and critical point of entry for Platform Equinix® to Africa. “By extending our global reach, we offer our 10,000 customers a significantly large new market to enter and interconnect with at many levels. Our expectations are high given what we have learned about the vision of the Lagos State Government and we are committed to making Lagos the Digital hub of Africa. To put this in context, Amsterdam as a key hub, with a population of 1 million people has 9 Equinix Data Centers with over 106MW capacity. Lagos, with a population of over 20 million, has the potential to far exceed this footprint. We are committed to bringing our capital, expertise, knowledge and customers to accelerate the digital age in Nigeria”.
In line with MainOne’s existing assets, the new Lekki II Data Center offers open access connectivity to all the leading telecom networks in Nigeria with established presence on the Lekki campus. Customers will enjoy access to a rich ecosystem of telecom operators, global networks, financial services companies, and content providers not just in Nigeria, but across West Africa.
MDXi, an Equinix company is West Africa’s leading data center company. Its carrier neutral data centers across the key markets of Nigeria, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire provide access to all leading internet exchanges, network providers and ISPs in the West African region.
MDXi offers a variety of colocation, cloud and interconnection services, delivered via world-class infrastructure, a highly skilled and certified support team. Our facilities have operated with 100% uptime since inception.
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