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JIM OVIA RECOGNISED IN AMERICA AS AFRICA’S BUSINESS LEADER

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Endorsement and recognition has again come the way of Jim Ovia, Chairman of Zenith Bank Plc. as he was on Tuesday night recognized as a leading entrepreneur in Africa by the African-American Institute (AAI).

Ovia, in what is a reward for his business leadership and philanthropy, received the AAI 2017 Business Leader Award at a ceremony held on the sidelines of the ongoing United Nations General Assembly in New York, the United States. He was recognized for impacting hugely on enterprise and human resource development on the continent.

Ovia, founding Group Managing Director and CEO of Nigeria’s largest bank, was honoured along with President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana (National Achievement); Nicole Amarteifio, (Leadership in African Media and Arts); and Bozoma Saint-John, Chief Brand Officer, UBER (Innovation & Technology) as Africa’s best

The Africa-America Institute was set up in 1953 to help increase Africa’s human capacity for development through training and education and recognizes Africans who have demonstrated remarkable achievements in various fields, the intention being to present the award winners at the high profile stage of the UN General Assembly as representatives of the great work going on in Africa.

The AAI awards, which is announced annually and showcases Africa’s best, has honored individuals who are working to fulfill AAI’s mission of increasing Africa’s human capacity for development and promoting engagement between the African continent and America.

The awards are presented at a special gala night bringing together African Heads of State and diplomats, international and senior U.S. government officials, business and civil society leaders, educators, journalists, philanthropists and other prominent figures who are working towards advancing economic and development progress in Africa

Ovia was at the helm of affairs at Zenith Bank, from inception, for 20 years until his resignation in July, 2010 but was reappointed the Chairman of the bank in 2014. He was a member of the National Economic Management Team of Nigeria and he is a member of the Honorary International Investors’ Council.

Jim Ovia is a philanthropist and the founder and proprietor of James Hope College, Agbor, Delta State. His foundation, the Jim Ovia Foundation, which focuses on providing scholarship to the less-privileged, has a number of beneficiaries that are now qualified medical doctors, engineers, etc.

He is also the Founder of several enterprises and philanthropic institutions including the Youth Empowerment & ICT Foundation, which focuses on improving the socio-economic welfare of Nigerian youths by empowering them to embrace Information and Communication Technology.
In recognition of his achievements particularly in support of the Nigerian economy, Jim Ovia was conferred with the national award of Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON) in November, 2011.

Jim Ovia holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Louisiana, Louisiana, USA (1979) and a B.Sc. degree in Business Administration from Southern University, Louisiana, USA (1977). He is an alumnus of Harvard Business School (OPM).

Zenith Bank Receives D’Tigress (vows to continue support for basketball)

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Sponsor of the National Women Basketball League, Zenith Bank, on Thursday received the victorious AfroBasket champions, D’Tigress at the company’s headquarters in Lagos.

The Group Managing Director of Zenith Bank, Peter Amangbo, congratulated the players and officials for the remarkable feat recorded in Bamako, Mali.

D’Tigress were glorious at the championship as they won all their matches including two against the defending champions and tournament favourites, Senegal. The first was a group match which they won 58-54 and the second was the final which ended 65-48.

Amangbo stressed that the bank and indeed Nigerians were proud of the achievement of the team at the AfroBasket

He said: “It was not only the win that was exciting but also the way you won. During the competition, we were following your progress with keen interest and it is heartwarming that you came back as champions.

“We always support people who are committed just like you. Nigerians have made a mark in basketball. We all know about the exploits of Akeem Olajunwon. Raptors is my favourite team and the GM of the team is a Nigerian.”

The Zenith Bank boss also stressed that the company will throw its weight behind the team for the World Championship slated for Spain next year.

“Now that you are going to Spain, we are going to support you again for the competition,” he added.

Captain of the team, Aisha Muhammed, commended the bank for hosting the team, and supporting the game in the country.

“I am happy to be here because the support Zenith has been giving the game is a big one for our colleagues playing in Nigeria,” she said.

The team was rewarded with cash awards, which were paid into accounts opened for them during the visit, and for which they were all presented with Debit Cards.

The vice president of the Nigeria basketball federation, Babatunde Ogunade, who led the team showered praises on Zenith Bank for its continued support for the game.

He noted the fact that the bank had through its sponsorship of the women league enabled Nigerians women basketballers to challenge for the leadership of game in Africa.

Ogunade also said that three members of the winning team, Chioma Udeaja, Nkechi Akashili and Upe Atosu featured in the recently held Zenith Women league.

Zenith Bank Hails D’Tigress For Winning NWL

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Zenith Bank Plc, sponsors of the annual National Women League, on Monday congratulated Nigeria’s female team, D’Tigress, winning the 2017 FIBA Women AfroBasket which ended in Bamako, Mali at the weekend.

D’Tigress achieved the remarkable feat in style by beating the defending Champions, Senegal, 65-48 in the final match to earn Nigeria her third title in the competition which was the 23rd edition. Incidentally, Senegal has won the competition 11 times. Nigeria also won the event in 2003 and 2005.

The Group Managing Director of Zenith Bank, Peter Amangbo, on Monday showered praises on the players for going all the way to make Nigerians proud.

He said: “It was a sweet victory for the Nigeria. As sponsors of the national women league, Zenith Bank is a major stakeholder in the sport and we are happy with the feat achieved by D’Tigress

“We salute the hard work and determination of the players and officials of the team especially because they won all their matches in the competition.”

The Zenith Bank boss however paid special tribute to the three home-based players who made the trip to Mali for the competition. They are Nikechi Akashili, Chioma Udeaja and Upe Atosu.

“Let me also congratulate the three worthy ambassadors of the Zenith Women Basketball League- Akashili, Udeaja and Atosu- who joined national camp just after the final of the Final 8 in Lagos.

“We are particularly proud that of the home-based players invited out of which three eventually made the team. This is good for our investment in basketball over the years and we are encouraged to do more.”

D’Tigress started the competition by beating Mozambique 80-69 in their first game, whipped Democratic Republic of Congo 84-47 in the second and defeated Egypt 106-72 to emerge the first team to book a place in the quarterfinal of the competition.

Nigeria also defeated Senegal 58-54 in the last group match, blew out Cote d’Ivoire 98-43 in the quarterfinals and pipped Mali 48-47 in the semis before beating Senegal 65-48 in the final.

ZENITH BANK TO PARTNER READAMANA TO ENLARGE ICT COMPETTION, DISCOVER MORE KATHERINE ETAS

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Zenith Bank is to partner with ReadAmana to encourage participation by more students in the annual Microsoft Office Specialist Championship, Group Managing Director, Peter Amangbo has said.

Speaking in Lagos on Tuesday while receiving the Nigerian contingent to the 2017 edition of the Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship (MOSWC) held in Disneyland, California, USA, Amangbo said the bank was encouraged by the performance of the team and would work with the Nigerian organisers to enlarge the competition.

Katherine Eta of Childville School, Ogudu, Lagos last week emerged the third place winner in the keenly contested 2017 World Championship, the only African winner in the competition.

Nigeria was represented at this year’s championship with the support of Zenith Bank Plc. by Katherine, Husna Bello, Glisten International Academy, Abuja, FCT; Ogon Holdings, Deeper Life High School, Port Harcourt, Rivers State; Adeniran Oluwatamilore, Louisville Girls High School, Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State; Oloriegbe Favour, Childville Schools, Ogudu, Lagos and David Eta, Childville Schools, Ogudu, Lagos, Lagos State.

AWARD WINNING SCHOOLGIRL, KATHERINE ETA, CHALLENGES OTHER STUDENTS AS ORGANISERS MOVE TO ENLARGE COMPETITION

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Award winning Nigerian schoolgirl, Katerine Eta, has challenged other students to see failure as a call to put in more efforts rather than an excuse to quit.

Katherine of Childville School, Ogudu, Lagos last week emerged the third place winner in the keenly contested 2017 Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship (MOSWC) held in Disneyland, California, USA.

The award-winning girl’s advice came as ReadManna, organisers of Nigerian competition that gave her the platform to compete at the World Championship is targeting more schools in order to give opportunities to more students.

Speaking at the Murtala International Airport on arrival on Saturday from the United States, Katherine said, “you shouldn’t see failure as a reason for you to quit, failure should be a reason for you to work harder to do more of what you have already done”.

The schoolgorl, whose attendance at this year’s championship with support from Zenith Bank Plc., is the only African Champion in this year’s championship. The bank has partnered with ReadAmana, since 2007 and sponsored Nigerian winners’ participation in the World championship.

“Last year I went for the world championship and I came tenth in the world and I decided that I was going to go again this year doing a different programme and this year because I work harder and because I was more determined, I came third in the world,” Katherine said, citing her own example to encourage other students.

On what she planned to do with her newly acquired expertise in the Microsoft application, Katherine said she intends to get better still at using it and then help use the knowledge to help others.

Also speaking on Saturday, Chair of ReadManna, Mrs. Ednar Agusto, said the organisation plans to expand the Nigerian competition in order to give more students the chance to acquire competencies in Microsoft applications.

On her motivation for the initiative, Agusto said it was borne out of the reality that competence in the use of the applications can help to increase productivity and improve self-esteem in the students.

“You know you will be able to stand and be able to do more things, it is a solid foundation in this ICT world because today, digital literacy is the language of the economy, so if you don’t know how to speak this language you are at a disadvantage, so we decided to start at the grassroots, work with the schools so that these children can have the right foundation and from there, they can move on to more advanced computer certification and knowledge,” she said.
She promised that the organisation will invite more public schools to participate in the competition, saying that only one public school, Lagos State Model College, Meiran competed in the Nigerian championship, with fifteen students representing.

For her effort, sixteen-year-old Katherine, whose attendance at the competition was made possible by Zenith Bank, received $1,500, a NuVision Solo 10 Draw Tablet at the world championship and another N750,000 ReadManna Chairman’s Prize. Wai Feng Cheng (Hong Kong) and Chi Kei Leong (Macao) came first and second respectively.

The annual Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship is a global competition that tests student’s skills in Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint. Apart from Katerine, four other Nigerian students represented Nigeria at the competition which is open to all students aged between 13 and 22 years enrolled in an academic institution.

The other members of the Nigerian delegation were Husna Bello, Glisten International Academy, Abuja, FCT; Ogon Holdings, Deeper Life High School, Port Harcourt, Rivers State; Adeniran Oluwatamilore, Louisville Girls High School, Ijebu-Ode, Ogun State; Oloriegbe Favour, Childville Schools, Ogudu, Lagos and David Eta, Childville Schools, Ogudu, Lagos, Lagos State.

The team was accompanied to the championship by an ICT Teacher from Glisten International Academy, Abuja, Stephen Adeyemi.

The 2017 MOSWC in versions 2013 and 2016 of the Microsoft programs was contested worldwide by about 1.1 million students from 140 countries. 157 students from 50 countries eventually qualified to compete in the world finals in Disneyland, California.

This year’s championship conducted annually by ReadManna in Nigeria was held over a period of 7 months between 1 August, 2016 and 30 April, 2017 with about 882 entries from 20 Secondary Schools in Lagos, Ogun, Rivers, Kwara States and the FCT.

The competition ended with 112 out of the 161 students shortlisted for the national competiiton certified in Microsoft Excel, PowerPoint and Word.

ALL SET FOR ZENITH WOMEN BASKETBALL LEAGUE FINAL IN LAGOS

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Sponsor of the event, Zenith Bank, have concluded arrangements to make the final phase a big show for all the teams and the fans of the game.

Eight teams have qualified for the Final 8 of the competition after the conclusion of the third and fourth phases of the league which held in Asaba and Ibadan respectively.

The eight teams are defending champions First Bank Basketball Club of Lagos, IGP Queens of Lagos, Ist Deep Water of Lagos and Plateau Rocks of Jos.

Others who also qualified for the Final 8 which comes up in Lagos from July 22 through 29 are former champions Dolphins of Lagos, Customs of Lagos, Delta Force of Asaba and GT2000 of Abuja.

First Bank which campaigned in Group A at the Ibadan phase which ended last Friday amassed the maximum 20 points after winning all 10 games played, scoring a total of 530 points and conceded 292 with a difference of +282 while Dolphins who led in Group B also didn’t drop any game to amass 20 points, scoring 785 points and conceded 623 with a difference of +162.

In Group A, Plateau Rocks and Benue Princess tied at 13 points apiece but Plateau sailed through on superior average after the Head to Head resolution.

All the qualifiers have be advised to arrive Lagos on July 22, early enough for the Technical Meeting on July 23 for the matches which are expected to run from July 24 to 29 with an All Star Game on July 28.

SENATE COMMENDS ZENITH BANK FOR FULL REMITTANCE OF CUSOMS COLLECTIONS, DIRECTS OTHER BANKS TO MAKE REFUNDS

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The Senate Committee probing the Customs N30 trillion banks remittance infractions has given the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) seven days to recover all monies collected by banks on behalf of the agency.

Among banks directed to make refund are Access Bank, N42bn; Diamond Bank, N75bn;FCMB, N14bn; Stanbic IBTC, N13bn; and others, even as the Committee gave Zenith Bank a clean bill of health.

Committee chairman, Sen. Hope Uzodinma, noted that following its investigations, the Committee found that only Zenith Bank had complied with 100 percent remittance.

The Senate Committee on Customs, Excise and Tariff, which recently completed a successful work on the review of Customs Act, gave the matching order to the apex bank at an investigative meeting with the CBN, Ministry of Finance, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), commercial banks and other stakeholders.

Sen. Uzodinma, threatened that the senate would involve the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) should the CBN fail to recover the money within the given time.
The committee had established during the hearing that of the over N30 trillion being investigated by the committee, over N536 billion was terminated at the various banks but not remitted to CBN.

The Senator representing Orlu Zone of Imo State averred that “There are various infractions regarding import and export duties and we have carried out detailed investigation into the matter. Today, we will address the non-remittance of revenue collected on behalf of Customs.

He made it clear that “The only bank that is free of this infraction is Zenith Bank,” stressing that “We must recover what we are able to and moving forward, we must stop this infraction that is affecting our economy negatively”.

However, the Committee gave the banks two weeks to clarify the observed infractions relating to utilised and unutilised ‘Form M’ and Simple Goods Declaration (SGD), and others, including abandoned assessment of Customs Duties and foreign exchange allocation manipulation