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Sterling Bank Partners Zipline On Medical Drone Delivery Service

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Sterling Bank Partners Zipline On Medical Drone Delivery Service

Sterling Bank’s Health Technology Partner, Zipline has signed a service level agreement with Kaduna State Government for the implementation of drones in the health supply chain system. Zipline, is a global drone delivery service and will use autonomous delivery drones to help transform emergency healthcare and expand access to critical life-saving medications in the State.

Mr. Obinna Ukachukwu, Divisional Head, Health and Education Sector for Sterling Bank Plc, who disclosed this in Kaduna today during the signing of the partnership’s Memorandum of Understanding said that the delivery services would not only include daily medical supplies such as blood pints and medicines but also include a plan to use the drones in the delivery of Covid-19 vaccines across the state.

According to him, the bank is supporting the initiative because health is one of the five sectors of the Nigerian economy that the bank has committed to and is consistently seeking to improve. The other sectors are education, agriculture, transportation and renewable energy.

Ukachukwu added that the bank was very proud of the partnership and would be committed to playing its part to deliver on the project, noting that Sterling Bank was playing advisory and business development roles. He also noted that this was the first implementation of this service in Nigeria, and that there were ongoing discussions with other states to adopt the service.

READ ALSO; FirstBank unveils school products, others

On the groundbreaking initiative, the Governor of Kaduna State Mallam Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai said, “Kaduna State has one of the best healthcare systems in Nigeria. But while we celebrate our successes, we must also recognize that we have much more work to do to create universal access to critical healthcare for all.”

According to him, “This is especially true when it comes to making sure that millions of people in the state have safe and timely access to the best Covid-19 vaccines available. This new emergency drone delivery service is a great solution to deliver vaccines, blood and other lifesaving products instantly when time is of essence. It will help ensure that millions of people in Kaduna State will always get the care they need.”

Also, during the event, Mr. Daniel Marfo, Senior Vice President at Zipline, stated that where people live should not determine whether or not they get access to medical supplies like the Covid-19 vaccine, noting that rural areas across the world are being hit hard by the virus.

“These communities face great challenges. That is why I am so proud of our partnership with Sterling Bank and Kaduna State. We can help health systems in Nigeria bypass the need for huge investments in ultra-low temperature infrastructure and increase Covid-19 vaccine access for millions through our drone delivery services and cold chain infrastructures and logistic capabilities. But this system is capable of so much more. It will also assist with the delivery of routine, critical and emergency medicines to hard-to-reach areas when they need them the most,” Marfo said.

He hinted that Zipline had built an end-to-end, cold chain distribution capability that allows it to safely deliver frozen and ultra-low Covid-19 vaccines and medical products.

 

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Nigeria’s Headline Inflation Rises To 21.9%

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Nigeria's Headline Inflation Rises To 21.9%

Nigeria‘s headline inflation has risen to 21.09 per cent according to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) report for the month of October.

The CPI report which was released on Tuesday by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said that there was an increase of 0.32 per cent from the 20.77 per cent recorded in September.

The data suggests that the headline inflation rate climbed by 5.09 per cent in October 2022 as compared to the same month the year before (October 2021).

“In October 2022, on a year–on–year basis, the headline inflation rate was 21.09%. This was 5.09% points higher compared to the rate recorded in October 2021, which was 15.99%.

READ ALSO:  Nigeria’s Inflation Rises Over 18 Per Cent

“This shows that the general price level for the headline inflation rate increased in October 2022 when compared to the same month in the preceding year (i.e., October 2021) by 5.09%,” the report read.

The report added that “On a month-on-month basis, the headline inflation rate for October 2022 was 1.24%, this was 0.11 % lower than the rate recorded in September 2022 (1.36%).

“The percentage change in the average CPI for the twelve months ending October 2022 over the average of the CPI for the previous twelve months period was 17.86 percent, showing a 0.91 percent increase compared to the 16.96 percent recorded in October 2021.”

The year-on-year food inflation rate in October 2022 was 23.72 per cent, an increase from the previous month’s rate of 23.34 per cent.

“On a month-on-month basis, the food inflation rate in October was 1.23%, this was a 0.21% decline compared to the rate recorded in September 2022 (1.43%).

“This decline was attributed to the reduction in prices of some food items like tubers, palm oil, maize, beans, and vegetables,” the report further stated.

 

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N52b Cash Deposited In Banks Over Naira Re-design Policy

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N52b Cash Deposited In Banks Over Naira Re-design Policy

About N52 billion cash has been deposited in banks barely two weeks after the announcement of plans by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to redesign some naira notes.

There were indications that the deposit sum may increase in the next few days because it is suspected that about N3 trillion cash was in circulation at the time the apex bank announced the policy.

The CBN claimed that some of the identified depositors were politicians, bureau de change operators, businessmen, real estate financiers, and traders.

It was also learnt that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other security agencies have directed banks to keep records of depositors, including institutions.

 READ ALSO: I’m Fully Behind CBN Governor On Redesigning Naira Notes – Buhari

The screening of high-profile depositors, especially currency hoarders and money launderers, may begin soon.

There was the fear that the redesigning of some naira notes may affect cash haul during the ongoing 2023 campaign.

According to a reliable source, who was armed with facts and figures, security and intelligence agencies have confirmed huge cash deposits of N52 billion in banks in less than two weeks.

The source said some representatives of one of the agencies appeared before a Senate Committee on Tuesday in Abuja behind the curtains.

The source said: “As the cash was being taken to banks, we were getting the details of all the depositors and in some cases, we could trace the sources.

“As of Tuesday, over N52billion cash has been deposited in various banks. Some of the deposits have been traced to some politicians, bureau de change operators, suspected money launderers, middlemen, drug barons, businessmen and traders.

“All the banks have been directed by the EFCC and other anti-graft agencies to keep records of cash depositors and their KYC. They are also mandated to make the list available when required.
“With this directive, it will be easier to uncover currency hoarders, speculators and those sabotaging the nation’s economy.”

Responding to a question, the source said: “Some politicians, governors and suspected fronts of Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) have been on the radar of some anti-graft agencies.

“Some state governments cannot pay salaries because the corrupt table payment system they have adopted is not practicable with the CBN directive.

“Apart from redesigning the notes, the CBN is also complementing the anti-graft agenda of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

READ ALSO: Redesigning Of Naira May Not Hold As Finance Minister Disagrees With Emefiele

“Nigerians have virtually abandoned the cashless economic policy for cash transactions.

“We may be on our way to addressing basic issues compounding our anti-corruption campaign as a nation.”

On October 26, the CBN announced its decision to redesign the naira.
It cited significant hoarding of banknotes, worsening shortage of clean and fit banknotes, and increasing ease and risk of counterfeiting.

It added that over 85 per cent of the currency in circulation is outside the vaults of commercial banks.

CBN said as of the end of September, N2.73trillion out of the N3.23 trillion currencies in circulation was outside the vaults of commercial banks and supposedly held by the public.

 

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Lagos To Spend N1.6 Trillion Next Year

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Lagos To Spend N1.6 Trillion Next Year

The Lagos State government plans to spend N1.692 trillion next year.

The state governor,  Babajide Sanwo-Olu, presented the estimated N1.692 trillion budget estimates for the 2023 to the House of Assembly.

The ‘Budget of Continuity’ comprises revenue of N1.342 billion and deficit financing of N350,000 billion.

READ ALSO: Why We Aren’t Surprised By Wike’s Endorsement Of Sanwo-Olu – Jandor

This further comprises total Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of N1.108 billion and federal transfers of N234 billion.

The estimate also proposes a recurrent expenditure of N759 billion and Capital expenditure of N670 billion.

 

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