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Ebenezer Onyeagwu Wins Best Banking CEO Of The Year In Africa In The International Banker Awards 2023

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The Group Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Zenith Bank Plc, Dr. Ebenezer Onyeagwu, has been named ‘Best Banking CEO of the Year in Africa’ in the International Banker 2023 Banking Awards.

The award, published in the Spring 2023 Issue of the International Banker Magazine, sees Dr Onyeagwu honoured alongside other individuals and banks from the Middle East and Africa.Expressing gratitude for the recognition, Dr. Onyeagwu commended the Publishers of the International Banker for considering him a fitting recipient of the ‘Best Banking CEO of the Year in Africa’ award.

He stated, “This award reflects the bank’s position as a leading financial institution in Nigeria and the African continent. It also attests to our commitment to principles of sustainability and high ethical standards, which have become integral to our overall strategy as an institution”.

He dedicated the award to the Founder and Chairman, Jim Ovia, CFR, for his guidance and mentorship; the bank’s management team and staff, for being the shoulder upon which his achievements and success as CEO rests; and the bank’s customers for making Zenith Bank their bank of choice.

Dr Onyeagwu’s outstanding career has led to him receiving multiple awards, including Bank CEO of the Year (2019) by Champion Newspaper, Bank CEO of the Year (2020, 2021 & 2022) by BusinessDay Newspaper, CEO of the Year (2020 and 2021) – SERAS Awards, and CEO of the Year (2022) – Leadership Newspaper.

As Group Managing Director/CEO, Dr Onyeagwu has led Zenith Bank to achieve tremendous feats and milestones in financial performance (including 47 per cent growth in the bank’s market capitalisation in four years), financial inclusion, corporate governance and sustainability.

These efforts have culminated in several local and international awards and recognitions including being recognised as Number One Bank in Nigeria by Tier-1 Capital, for the 13th consecutive year, in the 2022 Top 1000 World Banks Ranking published by The Banker Magazine; Bank of the Year (Nigeria) in The Banker’s Bank of the Year Awards 2020 and 2022; Best Bank in Nigeria, for three consecutive years from 2020 to 2022, in the Global Finance World’s Best Banks Awards; Best Commercial Bank, Nigeria 2021 and 2022 in the World Finance Banking Awards; Best Corporate Governance Bank, Nigeria in the World Finance Corporate Governance Awards 2022; ‘Best in Corporate Governance’ Financial Services’ Africa, for four consecutive years from 2020 to 2023, by the Ethical Boardroom; and the Most Responsible Organisation in Africa 2021 by SERAS Awards.On March 25, 2023, he was conferred with a Doctorate Degree in Business Administration by the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria’s first indigenous University, in recognition of his immense achievements as Group Managing Director/CEO of Zenith Bank as well as his contributions to the growth of the financial services sector in Nigeria and across the African continent.

The award was given during the 50th convocation ceremony of the University.

Published by Finance Publishing Limited, the International Banker is a leading global source of authoritative analysis and opinion on banking, finance and world affairs.

Its influence, integrity, accuracy and objective opinion have earned it global recognition.

The International Banker Awards strive to recognise the most worthy financial institutions around the world – those not just doing their jobs well but exceptionally well – those operating at the industry’s cutting edge and setting new performance levels to which others will aspire.

The 2023 Banking Awards focused on various criteria, including the provision of much-needed capital for economic growth, cutting-edge innovation to enhance security and efficiency, commitment to sustainability and ESG principles, as well as intelligent investing to maximise profits and shareholder value.

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Diesel price increased to N1,462 per litre in June, says NBS

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The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) says the average price of automotive gas oil (AGO), also known as diesel, was N1,462.98 per litre in June.

In its automotive gas oil (diesel) price watch for June 2024 on Wednesday, the bureau said this represents an increase of 4.20 percent compared to N1,403.96 reported in May.

“The average retail price of automotive gas oil (diesel) paid by consumers increased by 79.32% on a year-on-year basis from a lower cost of N815.83 per litre recorded in the corresponding month of last year (i.e., June 2023) to a higher cost of N1462.98 per litre in June 2024,” NBS said.

“On a month-on-month basis, an increase of 4.20% was recorded from N1403.96 in the preceding month of May 2024 to an average of N1462.98 in June 2024.

“Looking at the variations in the state prices, the top three states with the highest average price of the product in June 2024 include Niger State (N1979.23), Cross River State (N1920.86), and Taraba (N1742.46).

“Furthermore, the top three lowest prices were recorded in the following states namely, Lagos state (N1210.77), Ogun state (N1239.17), and Abuja (N1240.00).”

Based on zonal representation, the bureau said the north-east zone has the highest average diesel price of N1,659.07; while the south-west zone has the lowest price of N1,280.54.

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CBN announces date to hold MPC meeting

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced its forthcoming monetary policy committee (MPC) meeting.

In a statement on Tuesday, the CBN said its 296th MPC meeting between July 22 and 23.

The committee is the highest policy-making committee of the bank, led by Olayemi Cardoso, CBN governor.

The MPC meeting is set up to review the country’s economic and financial conditions and determine the appropriate monetary policy direction in the short to medium term.

At the last meeting held on May 20 and 21, the committee raised the monetary policy rate (MPR), which benchmarks interest rates from 24.75 percent to 26.25 percent.

The MPC retained the asymmetric corridor at +100 basis points and -300 basis points around the MPR.

The committee also retained the cash reserve ratio (CRR) at 45 percent for deposit money banks and 14 percent for merchant banks.

Speaking to the press after the meeting, Cardoso had said the reason for the interest rate hike was to tame inflation.

He also said the committee’s efforts to contain inflation are yielding results.

On July 15, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) in its consumer price index (CPI) report for June, said Nigeria’s inflation rate rose to 34.19 percent in June 2024 — up from 33.95 percent in May.

According to the bureau, the headline inflation rate in June showed an increase of “0.24% points when compared to the May 2024 headline inflation rate”.

NBS also said food inflation surged to 40.87 percent in the month under review as prices of food and non-alcoholic beverages continued to surge.

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Nigerians can now obtain UAE visas, says FG

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Mohammed Idris, minister of information and national orientation, says Nigerians can now apply for and obtain visas to the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Idris said the federal government has reached an agreement with the UAE to allow Nigerian passport holders to obtain visas for travel to the Arab nation starting today, July 15.

The minister spoke with the State House correspondents in Abuja on Monday, shortly after the weekly federal executive council (FEC) meeting.

He said the agreement includes updated controls and conditions to be fulfilled before the issuance of a UAE visa.

On December 13, 2021, the UAE issued a travel restriction on passengers from Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, citing a surge in the countries’ COVID-19 cases among passengers from the two African nations.

However, TheCable reported the travel ban might not be unconnected with the diplomatic row between Nigeria and the UAE over Air Peace’s flight frequency to the Arab country.

Air Peace had requested a slot of three weekly flights from Nigeria to Sharjah Airport in the UAE, but only one was granted by the country’s General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA).

GCAA said Air Peace should not expect to retain its flight frequency after pulling out of Sharjah Airport; the Nigerian airline, however, denied the claim.

In retaliation for Air Peace’s treatment in the UAE, the federal government dropped Emirate’s slots from 21 to one, leading to the Dubai-based airline suspending all its flights to Nigeria.

In September 2023, the federal government said the airline would resume services in Nigeria, signaling a resolution of the dispute.

The assurance followed a meeting between President Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Mohamed bin Zayed, president of the United Arab Emirates.

But since the meeting and the federal government’s announcement, Emirates has yet to begin scheduled flight operations.

In April, Festus Keyamo, minister of aviation and aerospace development, said Emirates Airlines is prepared to resume flight operations to Nigeria.

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Bodex F. Hungbo, SPMIIM is a multiple award-winning Nigerian Digital Media Practitioner, Digital Strategist, PR consultant, Brand and Event Expert, Tv Presenter, Tier-A Blogger/Influencer, and a top cobbler in Nigeria.

She has widespread experiences across different professions and skills, which includes experiences in; Marketing, Media, Broadcasting, Brand and Event Management, Administration and Management with prior stints at MTN, NAPIMS-NNPC, GLOBAL FLEET OIL AND GAS, LTV, Silverbird and a host of others

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