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Wednesday, 19 February 2020
Two communities bordering Chibok came under Boko Haram attack on Tuesday evening, as the terrorists burned houses in the communities located just six kilometres from the Borno town where over 200 school girls were abducted by the insurgents in April, 2014.
 
According to reports, the terrorists attacked Kwarangulum and Ntsiha villages, burning houses and other properties during the raid.
 
Reports also have it that roops stationed in Chibok mobilised to the communities.
 
Confirming the attack, the spokesman for the Kibaku Community Development Association, Dr Allen Manasseh, said the attack was still ongoing as at 9.10 pm on Tuesday.
 
He said: “The attack is ongoing at Kwarangulum and Ntsiha villages; soldiers from Chibok have deployed to the scene to contain them, but shootings are still ongoing.”
 
According to him, the residents were fleeing to Chibok for safety, adding that it was too early to ascertain the casualty figure and other details.
Published in World
Profit-taking in heavyweight bank stocks sustained the current downturn in the stock market today, causing as much as N13 billion depreciation in the total value of stocks on the exchange. The market capitalisation has been on a free fall for days on end and, so far this year, investors have lost an whopping N1.389 trillion.
 
A negative market breadth was recorded today as there were 13 losers compared to 12 gainers.
 
The All Share Index (ASI) shrank by 0.08% to close at 27,547.56 basis points. Market Capitalisation fell to N14.347 trillion at the end of today’s trade. Year to date, the index is down by 2.63%.
 
TOP 5 GAINERS
 
In value terms, Stanbic led advancers, appreciating by 1.32% to close at N38.5. C & I Leasing added up 7.41% to end today’s trade at N5.8. UAC-Property went up by 10% to N0.99. UCAP advanced to N2.93, notching up 1.74% in the process. Eterna Oil completed the top 5, climbing by 2.38% to close at N2.15.
 
TOP 5 LOSERS
 
GTB was the worst performing stock today, declining by 0.52% to close at N28.85. UBA shed 1.95% to close at N7.55. FBN Holdings fell to N5.8, losing 2.52%. Vitafoam dipped to N4.55, recording 3.19% depreciation. Zenith Bank closed at N19.5, going down by 0.51%.
 
TOP 5 TRADES
 
168.074 million shares estimated at N2.157 billion were traded today in 3,075 deals.
 
Zenith Bank was the most active stock today with 48.985 million units of its stocks worth N953.244 billion traded in 522 deals. 17.066 million units of GTB shares priced at N494.848 million exchanged hands in 186 transactions. UCAP had 15.367 million shares valued at N45.698 million traded in 172 deals. Access Bank traded 12.830 million shares estimated at N124.427 million in 159 transactions. FBN Holdings traded 10.311 million shares valued at N60.393 million in 270 deals.
Published in Business
Wednesday, 19 February 2020 09:57

Google shuts down free WiFi Globally

American multinational technology company, Google, has finally shut down its free WiFi facility, globally.
 
The internet services and product company revealed that the decision to withdraw from the already five-year old scheme was reached on account that internet data charges have significantly reduced over the years.
 
Google, however, added that its investment in the project had also not yielded revenue as expected.
 
Confirming this, following its decision to close down the initiative which was already in operation in about nine countries including India and South Africa, Google claimed that its partners have been struggling with infrastructural challenges.
 
“The challenge of varying technical requirements and infrastructure among our partners across countries has also made it difficult for Station to scale and be sustainable, especially for our partners,” explained Caesar Sengupta, VP, Payments and Next Billion Users, Google.
 
The business in the project for Google was simple: to provide internet data to harness marketing. So while providing internet connectivity for the public, Google sought to profit from the process by serving ads units on users’ devices and thereafter sharing gains amongst its network of partners.
 
Initially, when it launched in Nigeria in 2018, it was projected to host about 200 free WiFi stations spread across Lagos, Kaduna, Port Harcourt, Ibadan and Abuja by 2019. However, it was only able to host five in Lagos until its eventual withdrawal.
 
With the termination of this service, Google might modify these stations to meet other needs if not completely abandoned.
 
Recently, a number of students of the University of Lagos, who did not know about this development, wrongfully accused the institution of shutting down the facility when the Google station within the premises stopped functioning in the 2nd and 3rd quarters of 2019.
 
The situation is likely to be same for users in Muritala Mohammed Airport Wing 2, Computer Village Ikeja, Ikeja City Mall, and the Palms at Lekki.
 
Google’s perhaps biggest challenge is its tussle with the Nigerian Communications Commission, NCC, when the commission accused it in February 2019 of not operating with a licence.
 
They argued that Google was providing a free service which licensed telco companies were charging for. Hence, Google’s free WiFi was perceived as a killjoy to businesses of other network service providers, especially on the account that Google wasn’t paying levies and taxes to the regulatory body.
 
Google’s move to shut down the initiative is therefore perceived by analysts as business as usual: this is Google signing out of an investment that is not yielding profit, and this is NCC supposedly protecting businesses of licensed telecoms companies.
 
This sort of midway undertaking is, however, not new with Google as the tech company has history in pulling out of investments when it doesn’t seem to yield as envisaged. History is only repeating itself if one recalls how Google dumped its social networking Google+ project when it appeared losing completely to Facebook in 2018.
Published in World
Wednesday, 19 February 2020 09:31

Nigeria lost $750m to oil theft in 2019

The Group Managing Director of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), Melee Kyari, said on Tuesday Nigeria lost about $750 million to oil theft in 2019.
 
Kyari, who disclosed this in a presentation to members of the Executive Intelligence Management Course 13 of the National Institute for Security Studies (NISS) who were on a study tour to the NNPC in Abuja, described the activities of oil thieves and pirates as a threat to the Corporation’s operations.
 
According to him, any threat to the NNPC operations was a direct threat to the very survival of Nigeria as nation because of the strategic role of the Corporation as an enabler of the economy.
 
He listed other security challenges facing the NNPC to include vandalism of oil and gas infrastructure and kidnapping of personnel, adding that there was a deep connection between the various shades of insecurity challenges as they are all linked events in the Gulf of Guinea and the entire maritime environment.
 
The NNPC GMD for a concerted effort and synergy to secure oil and gas operations for the economic survival of the country.
 
Kyari reiterated the huge importance of fossil fuel to the global economy.
 
He said: “Even by 2050, fossil fuel would account for 80 percent of the energy mix, and there would still be consumption of at least 100 million barrels of oil per day. We are determined to remain relevant in the long term.”
Published in Business
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