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Alleged Delisting of Enugu City from World 100 resilient Cities: I stand with Ugwuanyi

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By Ujunwa Eze

Marcus Tullius Cicero, the Roman politician and lawyer, who served as consul in the year 63 BC., must have seen the future with his wise saying, thus, “As fire when thrown into water is cooled down and put out, so also a false accusation when brought against a man of the purest and holiest character, boils over and is at once dissipated, and vanishes and threats of heaven and sea, himself standing unmoved”.

This assertion is most appropriate to describe the morbid assertions ridiculing the leadership of Enugu State lead by His Excellency; Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi over the alleged delisting of Enugu City from among the world 100 resilient cities. In honesty, a few clicks of the keyboard show City is conspicuously missing in the list of the Foundation’s World 100 Resilient Cities.

Recall, the Enugu City was enlisted in 2014 by Rockefellers Foundation which bequeathed the State of certain statuses to source funding for its numerous projects.

First, instructively, the State has maintained a leading position in infrastructural development, in spite the meagre finance at its disposal. The present government has not only maintained the infrastructural development grids in the State, it has gone ahead to redefine grassroots participation in projects development.

So, when the Social Media Political Analysts begin to question: ‘What has the State government been doing?’ or ‘The State Government should better start explaining why the City was delisted by Rockefeller Foundation’, my usual answer is that you don’t shave a man’s head in his absence. Why do I say that? Rockefellers Foundation has not come out to give categorical or official report on reasons for removing the City from the map.

Secondly, I strongly disagree with critics in some quarters who argue that lack of infrastructural development was the main reason for this action. Only this December 2017, and in continuation of its massive infrastructure rehabilitation campaign in Enugu State, Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi’s administration approved contracts for the reconstruction of various road projects, mainly in Enugu metropolis at the sum of over N1.4 billion.

The State Government identified Asata, Iva Valley, Maryland and G.R.A, among others, as areas where the projects will be executed even as the State Executive Council also approved the reconstruction of St. Michael Catholic Church road , Asata and the extension of the Timbershade-Lomalinda Estate road (phase one) to Ugwuaji to serve as another gateway to Enugu from Port Harcourt expressway as well as ensure free flow of traffic.

The roads are been considered because of the economic importance; while the award for the reconstruction of Iva Valley link road, beginning from Camp 1 of Old PRODA site to the Enugu-Onitsha Expressway.

The Council also awarded contract for the rehabilitation of the NBL/Aqua Rapha road section at 9th Mile Corner in the Udi LGA. Ekochin-Ekeani- New market road reconstruction is nearing completion.

Thirdly, one outstanding testimony working for this Government is its refusal to align with the league of phantom project awarding governments as evident in some States today! In the first 365 days in office, this government unveiled 100 projects running into billions of naira. And who is told these were possible at the time recession was knocking on the doors; oil revenue was depreciating, even the IGR wasn’t at the level expected because the purchasing powers of the citizens became depreciated too. The State didn’t even bother to increase taxes like their counterparts did.

Fourthly, I choose to stand with a Government that is humane, down to earth and grassroot development oriented that ornamented and/or sugar coated governance meshed in avarice for stealing.

Fifthly, and on education, the State is warming up to recruit additional 700 teachers for the Universal Basic Education Scheme to fill the gap created by deaths and retirements within the past one year. The State Government recruited 1,320 teachers in 2016 for primary schools in the 17 local government areas of the state.

To strength and ensure efficient service delivery through effective monitoring and control, N37.2m has been approved for purchase of instructional materials such as desktop computers, laptops, marker boards and chalks for primary schools in the 17 local councils.

Sixthly, since it introduced Enugu State Traders Empowerment Scheme, traders (in their hundreds) have benefited from this gesture. Interestingly, extension of the programme has been granted till next year with some modifications aimed at enhancing the goal of the scheme.

Seventhly, and on security, the Government recently approved the installation of 24-hour power supply through solar technology to all 45 divisional police stations in the State. The measure will definitely assist the police overcome the difficulties that officers experience, especially at night in the various stations.

The State Executive Council subsequently approved two types of power lighting systems for each of the 45 police stations in Enugu State, as follows: Simple but steady solar power supply units to be installed in police reception and charge offices and to be used for illumination, for charging phones, and for powering other essential working tools such as television sets and fans; and solar powered street lamps within the premises and approaches to be installed in each of the 45 police stations to help monitor movement into and out of their precincts.

As learnt, issues around environmental sanitation are been tackled head-on. Recently, there has been refuse overflow with the State capital littered with wastes. Actually, I expected the State Governor to sack the entire management of ESWAMA! Yes, it is either they work assiduously to address the heaps of stenches defacing the State or chicken out of the system.

While I was contemplating on this measure, news filtered in that Governor Ugwuanyi has taken the bull by the horn. The brightness of the State is restored and many who have come home this yuletide season can attest to this. The magic applied to rid the State of refuse is a topic for another day.

In essence, I want to call the good people of Enugu State to support this government so we can move forward. I believe that Rockefellers Foundation might have its reasons for delisting the State from the group; at the same time, we have to hold our peace till the State gets to the root of the matter.

It will do us no good in joining the bandwagon of ‘lie-dispensers’, propagandist and political opportunists who are hell-bent on wrestling power from the incumbent administration and thus install their poverty-sharing party on us. God forbid! Enugu State remains in the safe hands of God!

Ujunwa Eze, sends her articles from Ezeagu, Enugu State

GrassRoots.ng is on a critical mission; to objectively and honestly represent the voice of ‘grassrooters’ in International, Federal, State and Local Government fora; heralding the achievements of political and other leaders and investors alike, without discrimination. This daily, digital news publication platform serves as the leading source of up-to-date information on how people and events reflect on the global community. The pragmatic articles reflect on the life of the community people, covering news/current affairs, business, technology, culture and fashion, entertainment, sports, State, National and International issues that directly impact the locals.

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Finance

Blockchain Technology Will Redefine Company of the Future, Says CTO of Digital Encode

Dr. Akindeinde also received “AfriTECH Blockchain Technology Mastery Personality Award 2022”.

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Akindeinde at AfriTECH 2

Dr. Oluseyi Akindehinde, the Co-founder and Chief Technical Officer (CTO) of Digital Encode Limited, has identified blockchain technology and the mobile phone as going to be fundamental to the company of the future.

Making a presentation at the just concluded Africa Tech Alliance Forum, otherwise known as AfriTECH 2.0, held in Lagos, recently, Akindehinde said that with the coming of the 5G technology, it is expected that the company of the future has to provide services along those lines.

The cybersecurity expert however, argued that it is doubtful that humans will completely live their lives using such tools as the mobile phone and the internet without any other thing explaining why he titled the presentation “Web 3.0, Blockchain and a decentralized digital identity.”

Akindeinde at AfriTECH 2
Dr. Oluseyi Akindeinde, Co-Founder/CTO, Digital Encode Limited, speaking at AfriTECH 2.0

According to Akindehinde, “Blockchain is actually three things. Blockchain is a protocol, like when you have an email, for instance. Email has an organized protocol; it is called SMTP. Blockchain is also a protocol.

“Number two, why do you have a protocol? It presupposes that there is a network; there are servers that host the email. The last thing about blockchain is that it is software. That means you have the SMTP, the servers, and the software.

“When we talk about blockchain in this part of the world, it is usually an anonymous cryptocurrency. Cryptocurrency is just the work of four quadrants which are fungible, non-fungible, transferable, and non-transferable.

“Cryptocurrency is fungible and transferable. When we talk about it being fungible, if I bring out a thousand naira note for instance, you can bring yours, and we exchange it; it doesn’t matter. The problem with a physical asset like that is that we can only make that transaction when we are in the same space,” he further disclosed.

While explaining the difference between electronic transaction and digital transaction, Akindehinde stated that what people often do online is electronic because there is somebody in the middle granting access.

“When you log onto your bank mobile app and you make a transaction from bank A to bank B, what you are doing is transferring messages; it’s like email. When you take your ATM card to an ATM, what you are doing is that you are delegating control of that transfer to that man in the middle which is your bank.

“This brings out two things: The concept of ownership and the concept of control. So, when you are doing that electronic transaction, you do not own that transaction, you are only in control of it. If the network goes down, you can no longer do that transaction.

“Your university degree for instance, is an asset to you, it’s unique to you; it’s non-transferrable. Unlike money you can exchange with another person, you cannot exchange your certificate with another person.

“Why can’t we, therefore, have a digital driver’s license or a digital passport, or a digital identity management system? Why are we still carrying plastics? That is why there is the need to power a digital economy through decentralized identities.

“We all have BVNs and NINs, why can’t I be authenticated with my NIN for instance, and I sign in and go? When you are online and you go and authenticate to your bank, by putting your username and password, your bank is not authenticating to you,” he said.

Akindeinde at AfriTECH 2
L-r: Olabanji Soledayo, Marketing and Retail Sales Manager, ESET West Africa; Seun Dania, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Tradefada; Jude Ozinegbe, Founder and Convener and Dr. Oluseyi Akindeinde, Co-Founder/CTO, Digital Encode Limited, during a panel session Blockchain | Cryptocurrency | Cybersecurity and the Future of Money, at AfriTECH 2.0

On the difference between Web 2 and Web 3, the Digital Encode CTO said that “Web 2 simply means that something is entirely online. I can’t use what is online in the physical world. For instance, if you have Gmail, Google Authentication or Microsoft, you can only use it on Google. The authentication resides on the server of the bank. That is the entire concept of Web 2.

“Web 3.0 on the other hand simply means that instead of having all the things stored on a centralized internet, you now have the data in your control; you are the owner, and you are in control of it. And that is why we have what is called a self-solving identity system.”

Dr. Akindeinde also received “AfriTECH Blockchain Technology Mastery Personality Award 2022”.

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Finance

The newly unveiled Naira Notes have been met with so much disappointment & dissatisfaction from Citizens

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Just like the Central Bank of Nigeria disclosed the remaking of the naira notes some months back, Citizens have been anxiously waiting to see the new designs that will surface.

The Central Bank of Nigeria stated that one of the reasons they were taking that step, Was to catch citizens who were hoarding stash of cash illegally. So bank deposits were monitored during the process as the new redesigned currencies were to be in circulation from January 2023.

However, though their plans were working quite well and the new naira notes has just been Unveiled by President Mohammadu Buhari, The new currencies which comprised of 200, 500 and 1000 naira notes was short of expectation as a lot of citizens were not happy about what they saw.

The new naira notes

Instead of new designs, The currencies were just given new colours which looked immature based on many citizen’s judgement.

The Unveiling of the new naira notes
The unveiling of the new naira notes

Still faced with the disappointment, A Citizen took it upon himself to Challenge the Central Bank of Nigeria on what a redesigned currency should look like. He made a design of 500 naira note using Photoshop, People couldn’t help but gush over his beautiful design.

Design of 500 naira note made by a citizen

Many Citizens say they still prefer the Old currencies to the new.

Comparison between the old and the new currencies

READ ALSO: No Administration Has Done What I’ve Done For Nigerian Businesses – Buhari

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Energy

AVEVA Showcases Role of Digital Technologies in Achieving Zero-Carbon Economy at COP27

Industrial software leader returns to annual UN Climate Change Conference to show how digital technologies are driving responsible use of global resources to build net-zero economies

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AVEVA
L-r: Lisa Wee, Global Head of Sustainability, Nayef Bou Chaaya, Vice-President – Middle East, Africa & Turkey and Amish Sabharwal, Executive Vice-President – Engineering and Simulation.

AVEVA, a global leader in industrial software, driving digital transformation and sustainability, will highlight how digital technologies can support public-private partnerships and unlock innovation to close the implementation gap on climate change at COP27.

The United Nations Climate Change Conference 2022 is being held on November 6-18 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. A sponsor of the parallel Climate Action Innovation Zone, AVEVA believes trusted data-led technologies are essential to decarbonization, driving responsible use of the world’s resources and delivering innovative, climate-forward products in the net-zero economy. AVEVA is one of the first 50 companies in the world1 to have its net-zero commitments validated by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi).

AVEVA’s presence at COP27 will be led by some of its most prominent climate advocates: Amish Sabharwal, Executive Vice-President – Engineering and Simulation and member of AVEVA’s Executive Leadership Team; Lisa Wee, Global Head of Sustainability; and Nayef Bou Chaaya, Vice-President – Middle East, Africa & Turkey.

During a number of thought-provoking sessions at the Sustainable Innovation Forum 2022, being held alongside COP27, the AVEVA executives will use real-life examples to showcase how digital technologies are unlocking opportunities in the net-zero economy.

Global opportunities in climate change mitigation

Sabharwal will join a plenary panel on November 10. Alongside UN executives, he will seek to explain why climate change mitigation represents our biggest opportunity yet.

Amish Sabharwal-AVEVA
Amish Sabharwal, Executive Vice-President – Engineering and Simulation and member of AVEVA’s Executive Leadership Team

“UN data shows that immediate action can halve greenhouse gas emissions (GHG emissions) by 2030 and put us on track to achieving our goal of keeping global temperature increases to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. At the same time, we are facing our biggest opportunity yet. Climate change is accelerating the fourth industrial revolution and nowhere is that more obvious than in the communities and industries here in Africa.,” Sabharwal said. “The decisions we take at COP27 and beyond will put the global economy on track to building resilient net-zero economies that drive the adaptation and mitigation agenda. Digital technologies are integral to building the new industries and supply chains that will deliver sustainable growth and create new jobs.”

Sabharwal added: “Closing the implementation gap on the world’s ambitious decarbonization commitments presents a major source of economic opportunity for businesses and communities.”

Move towards sustainability handprint thinking

On November 9, broadcaster Nik Gowing will interview Wee in the context of her role as a climate leader. 

Lisa Wee, Vice-President of Sustainability, AVEVA
Lisa Wee, Vice-President of Sustainability, AVEVA

She will share insights from the frontline of climate change mitigation and offer real-life examples of how AVEVA and its partners are paying it forward by co-innovating climate-responsive technological solutions to help usher in a zero-carbon economy.

“At AVEVA we recognize that we can drive exponential impact through the products we bring to market while supporting our customers on their decarbonization journey,” Wee said. “Now, our thinking has moved beyond measuring and managing our carbon footprint to considering our sustainability handprint. This positive contribution to sustainability through business activities and partnerships is a way of paying it forward to secure a better future for humanity and our planet.”

Role of partnerships in decarbonization

Also on November 9, Bou Chaaya will amplify the discussion around innovation in the face of climate change in a high-level spotlight session, with case studies of how global organizations are responding to – and taking advantage of – the opportunities arising from the focus on net-zero targets.

Nayef Bou Chaaya Vice President Middle East and Africa AVEVA
Nayef Bou Chaaya Vice President Middle East and Africa AVEVA

“Public-private partnerships can speed up delivery of the next-generation of low-carbon technologies by 2030 and break down silos in the development of new low-emission products to meet the world’s net-zero goals,” Bou Chaaya said. “AVEVA’s expertise has already demonstrated the role of digital technology in developing and scaling green grids and accelerating sustainable development through smart cities and smart water applications. We are convinced of the importance of driving private-sector collaboration on scope 3 upstream and downstream mitigation activities. We believe an open and connected industrial economy based on free-flowing data networks will be essential to hasten and scale up those sectors that are hardest to decarbonize.”

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