As the COVID-19 pandemic spreads across the globe, millions of people are heeding the advice of health experts to wash their hands. But for majority of Nigerians who do not have access to fixed and portable handwashing facilities, soap or alcohol-based hand rubs, and reliable water supplies, this life-saving measure remains out of reach.
A simple effective tool to promote public health, handwashing is one of the most effective ways to prevent transmission of disease – not just the coronavirus, but also diarrhea, cholera and typhoid. Yet most health care facilities, markets and other public institutions lack handwashing facilities.
Leading consumer goods company, Procter & Gamble (P & G) is working closely with government to expand access to this most basic of public health interventions.
The conglomerate continued its Protect Our Heroes missions to support Nigeria government’s efforts against COVID-19 with the donation of over 100 handwashing stations and 8,000 Safeguard soaps to the Lagos state government. Through this donation, P&G has partnered with the Office of Civic Engagement to promote Lagos state’s handwashing campaign through the installation of these handwashing stations in public areas such as markets, hospitals and local government offices in all the local government areas of the state.
Earlier in April, Procter & Gamble committed over 90 million Naira worth of humanitarian package to support the government in combating COVID-19. This intervention included hygiene products, handwashing stations and personal protective equipment for frontline healthcare workers across the 36 states and a nationwide media awareness campaign to promote handwashing amongst Nigerians. Speaking at the official handover ceremony, P&G’s Senior Director for Africa for Global Government Relations and Public Policy, Dr. (Mrs.) Temitope Iluyemi said, “We appreciate the efforts of the Lagos state government to curb the COVID-19 pandemic so far. As a force for good in the communities where we live and work, P&G is honored to partner with the Lagos State Government through the Office of Civic Engagement, to promote handwashing in the state.”
“As you know, handwashing remains one of the frontline defenses against infectious diseases including COVID-19, and, remains more important as more people return to work and schools resume. Our donation of handwashing stations will promote this practice while driving habit change amongst Nigerians. As an organization committed to touching and improving lives, we believe we have an important role to play in protecting the heroes in the frontline of this pandemic and our consumers” added Dr. (Mrs.) Iluyemi.
In his remarks, the Deputy Governor of Lagos state, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat added that “The COVID-19 pandemic has made handwashing facilities more critical than ever. Handwashing campaign remains an essential component of our framework for COVID-19 prevention and eradication. As a result, Procter & Gamble’s donation of handwashing stations and soaps is very timely given the recent easing of the nationwide lockdown. On behalf of the Executive Governor of Lagos, I thank P&G for this display of exemplary citizenship towards our fight against the pandemic.”
Also commenting at the handover event, the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Civic Engagement, Princess Aderemi Adebowale, noted that these handwashing stations will be installed in high-risk areas such as hospitals, markets and schools across all local government areas in Lagos state. She further urged Lagosians to utilize these stations for regular handwashing and to promote personal hygiene.
P&G has a long history of supporting our communities in times of need all around the world. Since the onset of the COVID-19 outbreak, P&G globally has stepped up its commitment to be a force for good and have been working with long-standing partner organizations to provide support to communities, relief agencies and people impacted by this challenging situation. So far, globally P&G’s in-kind, product and monetary donations add up to tens of millions of dollars across more than 200 relief organizations, more than 30 brands in more than 30 countries.
REDx marks one year of impacting the next generation of media leaders
REDx, the media and creative training school of leading media company, RED | For Africa, few days ago turned one.
With over 4,000 applicants, 200 graduates, and 5 training cohorts – two of which were virtual due to the COVID-19 pandemic – REDx has made an unforgettable impact on the future of young media practitioners in Nigeria since its launch in 2019.
“As we celebrate these key milestones, we are reminded of the progress we’ve made, and also the work we’re yet to do in achieving our goal of discovering, training, and transforming the vast reserve of underutilized and underemployed Nigerian-youth to world-class media professionals,” said Chude Jideonwo, Rector at REDx and co-founder of RED | For Africa.
“It’s fulfilling to see bright young people receive the career mentorship and practical knowledge they require to succeed. And I’m proud of the great work our REDx trainees are doing within and outside the company.”
RED | For Africa is a content, consulting and data company that deploys cultural intelligence from the streets across Africa to help companies, governments, investors and change-makers solve problems, shape narratives, and build movements.
SEPLAT appoints Onwuka ED, CFO
The Board of Directors of Seplat Petroleum Development Company Plc has announced the appointment of Mr. Emeka Onwuka as its Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and Executive Director of the Company. The appointment takes effect from August 1, 2020.
Onwuka has over 30 years’ experience in financial services within Sub-Saharan Africa. He has acted as the voice and face of major financial institutions in Nigeria. He is a former Group Managing Director /CEO of Diamond Bank Plc and former Chairman of Enterprise Bank Limited.
Onwuka is a Partner at Andersen Tax Nigeria and holds various board positions, including chairman, FMDQ Securities Exchange Limited; director, FMDQ Holdings Limited; director, Ecobank Nigeria Limited and director, Bharti Airtel Nigeria.
Onwuka received his B.SC. in Political Science from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka, and holds an MBA from the University of Benin. He is a Chartered Accountant, a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Taxation of Nigeria. He has attended executive programs at the Lagos Business School, Wharton Business School and Harvard Business School.
Onwuka holds the Nigerian National Honour, Officer of the Order of the Niger (OON).
The board of Seplat said it is confident that the wealth of knowledge and experience he brings will be a great addition to the company.
GBfoods completes N20 Billion tomato processing factory in Kebbi
GBfoods, a global leader in culinary product manufacturing, in partnership with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Kebbi State Government and the Emirate of Yauri recently built a N20 billion Tomato processing factory, in Kebbi State. The factory is the second largest in Nigeria and the only fully backward integrated plant in ECOWAS – and has the largest single tomatoes farm in Nigeria. When all phases of the project are finished, the factory will be the largest fresh tomatoes processing factory in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The investment, in the world-class factory and adjoining farm, includes a drip irrigation and fertigation infrastructure, greenhouses, seed planting robots, an incubation chambers and a plethora of agricultural machinery. The farm will serve a dual purpose, it will produce industrial tomatoes in the dry season and soya beans in the raining season. The tomato factory will convert fresh tomatoes into tomato concentrate used for producing Gino Tomatoes Paste and Gino Tomato Pepper Onion Paste while the soya bean will be used to process soya-bean oil which is a critical ingredient for GBfoods’ Bama and Jago Mayonnaise.
So far, the project has created over a 1,000 jobs including: 500 farming jobs, 150 factory jobs and 150 construction jobs. GBfoods also engaged many small holder farmers as out-growers. Apart from training the out-growers on good agricultural practices, GBfoods provided them with tomatoes seedlings, agrochemicals and various equipment such as water pumps and hose pipes, enabling the farmers access to water in the dry season. GBfoods also supported the host communities by providing and maintaining 16 boreholes of drinking water, a first for some of the surrounding villages.
The factory is fully backwardly integrated to the company’s farm and dedicated out-growers. In the coming tomatoes season, the plant will also source most of its raw material from out-growers who will grow the tomatoes on their own farms and from GBfoods’ owned and operated farm. The factory is engaging over 5,000 small holder farmers as out-growers, in the coming tomatoes season, to grow fresh tomatoes.
Mr. Vicenç Bosch, CEO of GBfoods Africa, commended the Federal Government for encouraging and supporting GBfoods to engage with CBN, Ministries, Departments and Agencies to ensure the successful completion of the factory. He also expressed his gratitude to the Federal Ministry of Industry Trade and Investments, Federal Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development, Kebbi State Government and the Ngaski Local Government Authorities for their tremendous support towards the actualization of the project. Bosch added our team of extension workers, consultants and agronomists are ensuring that the Nigerian farmers benefit from the technology transfer of our best practices and know-how built through over 40 years of successful tomato operations in Italy and Spain.
Speaking during opening of the factory, Mr. Vincent Egbe, the Country Manager, GBfoods Nigeria said, “The opening of this processing factory is a great milestone for us. It further demonstrates the company’s commitment towards helping Nigeria achieve its food security ambitions, in this case, of self-sufficiency in tomato concentrate production. We will continue to work with the Federal Government towards food security and local production and processing of fresh tomatoes. The company is dedicated to reducing pre and post-harvest losses, and also developing the value chain so as to improve revenue streams for tomato farmers.