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Nigerian boy, Odumuboni, wins Toyota’s car contest



A10-year-old pupil of Corona School, Gbagada, Lagos, Oluwademilade Odumuboni, has emerged global grand prize winner of the Toyota Dream Car Art Contest.

He won the coveted prize after beating 782,852 other contestants from 90 countries.

The contest is organised yearly by Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC), Japan for pupils worldwide, challenging them to draw their dream cars with an inspirational idea.

Master Odumuboni’s waste converter drawing, with the concept of helping countries, especially African communities, in food production and ensuring clean environment, was adjudged the best globally.

He was on Saturday, September 2 honoured and presented with a prize money of $5,000, a trophy, and a certificate at a ceremony organised by Toyota Nigeria Limited (TNL) in Lagos on behalf of the TMC of Japan.

His school, Corona, was also given $10,000 prize money.

The prize money awarded to Demilade and the school is meant for education.


His Art teacher, Mr Ojeagbega Oserogho, received a laptop for helping the gifted boy to excel.

Managing Director, Toyota (Nigeria) Limited, Mr Kunle Ade-Ojo, said: “We are very excited and elated. Indeed, we are very proud of the feat that Demilade achieved by also placing Toyota (Nigeria) Limited in the forefront of distributors globally.”

He said the star boy’s unique idea and dream had placed him and Nigeria on the global map of one of the largest Global Art Contests for children.

“His unique and truly inspirational idea expressed in an equally creative drawing earned him a global grand prize in the contest beating over 782,852 contestants from 90 countries/regions,” he added.

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Ade-Ojo said while the parent company, TMC of Japan initiated the contest in 2004, Toyota Nigeria keyed into it four years later as a corporate social responsibility initiative to help children express their imagination of a future car through drawing.

The TNL MD declared that his company felt fulfilled with its efforts of 15 years finally crowned.

“Apart from the shield and prize money from Toyota Motor Corporation that Demilade will be going home with, Toyota (Nigeria) Limited will also present a certificate and trophy to him,” he added.

The contest, he said, was also meant to drive the children to imagine a peaceful world full of smiles and to promote a friendly society.


“This way, Toyota is also cultivating a lifetime friendship with all these children while encouraging them to care for our planet and push their imagination beyond limits,” he stated. Ade-Ojo said annually, like other participant countries, three winners are picked in Nigeria from each age category: Category 1 (children not older than seven years); Category 2 (8-11 years); and Category 3 (12-15 years old), making nine winners.

The shortlisted nine national winners and their drawings are sent to Japan to compete with other drawings received from all over the world.

The Saturday ceremony was attended by parents of the star prize winner, family members, selected pupils from the school and their teachers led by the Head Teacher, Henrietta Eguagie.

Also in attendance were the three judges that shortlisted the drawing in Nigeria for the world competition.

Eguagie commended Oluwadamilade for his remarkable achievement that had brought glory to the school.

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She also hailed Toyota for the initiative of inspiring young people to unleash their creative expression and artistic potential.

“As one of Nigeria’s leading educational institutions, we are dedicated to utilising this prize money in a manner that directly benefits the learning experiences and development of our students,” she said.

Specifically, Eguagie listed areas they plan to invest the money as Toyota Dream Car Endowment Fund, Oluwademilade grant for art, establishment of art gallery and exhibition, digital art studio, art and tech competition, among others.


The star boy expressed gratitude to the TNL and the TMC for the opportunity to express himself through art; as well as his school, art teachers, parents for their encouragement.

“I appreciate Toyota for this award and for believing in a little child like me. I’m also grateful for the big award shield; I’ll surely display it in my room and admire it every day when I wake up in the morning. This experience has taught me that hard work pays and that we should never give up,” he said.

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UBA wins Big at The Bankers Awards, Covets African Bank of the Year, Best Bank in 8 of its Subsidiaries



• l-r: Middle East and Africa Editor of The Banker, a publication of Financial Times Group, London; Joy Macknight; Group Managing Director/CEO, Oliver Alawuba; and Ceremony Host, Krishnan Guru, with the Bank of the Year Africa 2023, along with Bank of the Year Awards won by UBA’s subsidiaries in Cameroon, Chad, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique, Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, at the Bankers Awards 2023, organized by The Banker, on Thursday in London, United Kingdom.

• Wins Bank of the Year Africa 2023 Subsidiaries

• Come Top in Cameroon, Chad, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique, Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone and Tanzania

Africa’s Global bank, United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, has again demonstrated its prowess on the international stage as it clinched nine prestigious awards at The Bankers Awards 2023, organized by The Banker Magazine – a publication of Financial Times of London, the world’s leading business newspaper.

The prestigious awards presented to the Bank at a ceremony in London, United Kingdom on Thursday, included the highly coveted Bank of the Year Africa 2023, solidifying UBA’s position as the leading financial institution on the African continent.

The Bank’s subsidiaries also emerged as the Bank of the Year in eight of the 20 countries where it operates in Africa. The winning subsidiaries are UBA Cameroon, UBA Chad, UBA Ghana, UBA Cote d’Ivoire, UBA Mozambique, UBA Congo, UBA Sierra Leone, and UBA Tanzania, underscoring the bank’s dominance and impact across diverse African markets. It is noteworthy that this would be the second time in the past three years that the Bank has won the regional award as the best bank in Africa, as it had emerged winner in 2021.

UBA’s Group Managing Director, Oliver Alawuba, who received the awards on behalf of the bank, expressed his gratitude and excitement about the awards, and said the recognitions come as a reassurance that the bank is on track in its goal of consolidating its leadership position in Africa, and creating superior value for its stakeholders.

UBA wins

l-r: Financial Times(FT) Africa Editor, John Everingon; Non-Executive Director, UBA UK, Alex Trotter; Head, Human Resources, UBA UK, Chika Patrick; Chief Finance Officer, UBA UK, Deji Adeyelure; Group Managing Director/CEO, Oliver Alawuba; CEO, UBA UK, Theresa Henshaw; Chief Technical Officer; UBA UK, Richard Ola; Head Trade Finance, UBA UK, Shaheen Butt; Head of Compliance, UBA UK, Alex Alves ; and Ceremony Host, Krishnan Guru at The Bankers Awards 2023, organized by The Banker, a publication of Financial Times Group, London where UBA coveted Bank of the Year Africa 2023 and Bank of the Year in Cameroon, Chad, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique, Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, on Thursday in London, United Kingdom.

“UBA is honoured to be named the Bank of the Year in these eight countries and to receive the overall Award for Africa. This accomplishment is a testament to the hard work, dedication, and innovative spirit of the entire UBA team. We remain committed to delivering top-notch banking services that positively impact the lives of our customers across the continent.

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Continuing, Alawuba said, “We have our millions of customers across the globe and our many thousands of staff to thank for this. They are the very reason why we keep winning and receiving these accolades.”

The Banker Awards is widely recognized as a benchmark for banking excellence globally, and UBA’s multiple victories underscore the institution’s commitment to providing exceptional financial servicesand superior financial intermediation on the continent. As Africa’s Bank of the Year, UBA has demonstrated its ability to navigate the complexities of the African banking landscape and emerge as a leading force in driving economic growth and financial inclusion.

Speaking earlier about UBA’s consistent excellence in the financial services sector across the continent which has earned the bank great accolades overtime, Editor of the Banker, Joy Macknight, said that as always, UBA remains a clear winner across a wide range of criteria, having performed impressively across its footprint with a strong financial performance across most of its markets.



UBA wins big

l-r: Financial Times(FT) Africa Editor, John Everingon and Group Managing Director/CEO, Oliver Alawuba with the Bank of the Year Africa 2023, along with Bank of the Year Awards won by UBA Group’s subsidiaries in Cameroon, Chad, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique, Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, during the Bankers Awards 2023, organized by The Banker, a publication of Financial Times Group, London on Thursday in London, United Kingdom.

“In a year of strong competition among the continent’s major banking groups, UBA has gained the edge on its rivals to win the Bank of the Year award for Africa for the 2nd time in three years. Congratulations. The award recognises the bank’s strength across Africa, including many of its most competitive markets,” Macknight stated.

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Since 1926, the Bank of the Year awards has been celebrating the best of global banking and is regarded as the industry standard for banking excellence.

Just recently, UBA won the 2023 FMDQ Gold Awards in three Categories including the Best FX Liquidity Provider, Dealing Institution of the Year and Best Money Market Liquidity Provider. This recognition is a testament to UBA’s impressive capital strength and capacity to provide liquidity to the Nigerian financial market even in the face of harsh economic realities. Despite the headwinds, UBA Group has consistently maintained its position as Nigeria’s leading financial institution.

In June, the banking group announced impressive half-year financial results, and further increased the performance in Quarter 3, 2023, with profit before tax (PBT) soared to N502.01 billion, Shareholders’ Funds standing strong at N1.778 trillion, and total assets, reaching N16.24 trillion.

These outstanding figures not only reflect UBA’s institutional strength, but also demonstrate its position as a corporate role model in Nigeria and across Africa.

United Bank for Africa Plc is a leading Pan-African financial institution, offering banking services to more than thirty-five (35) million customers, across 1,000 business offices and customer touch points in 20 African countries. With presence in New York, London, Paris, and Dubai, UBA is connecting people and businesses across Africa through retail, commercial and corporate banking, innovative cross-border payments and remittances, trade finance and ancillary banking services.

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IDL ‘Master of Fun’: Two days of mixing business with pleasure



IDL ‘Master of Fun’: Two days of mixing business with pleasure

How often has it been said: You do not mix business with pleasure. How true is it? Well, with a full impetus, the answer was delivered in clear terms to this age-long dictum, last weekend – not in all cases do business and pleasure not mix! In fact some businesses and pleasure are like Siamese twins – inseparable.

That much was proved by Intercontinental Distillers Limited, Nigeria’s foremost producers of wine and spirits.

They did this for the two days they locked down parts of Lagos.

On November 24 and 25, 2023, every visitor or passerby within the precincts of Isaac John in the Government Reserved Area, Ikeja must have noticed something unusual as the route was lined with cars of all shapes, models and sizes. Inside the imposing Radisson Blu, located in the highbrow street, showed the company spared no cost in returning the favours of their customers by giving them first-class treatments: a carnival of some sorts, worthy of every expression.

The event, which was the 2023 edition of the IDL Distributors Award, to reward customers for their loyalty, also included the re-launch of Teezers cocktail brand, and the unveiling of the new packaged products. But it was clearly beyond that by the other activities daintily choreographed to fit into the entire show. Like the fine work of a weaverbird the guests, right from their arrival on Thursday to the time they finally retired to their rooms, some in the early hours of Saturday, witnessed a sequence of events sure to remain in their memories for many years.

Emerging from their rooms on Thursday evening, the distributors and other guests were first treated to a dinner after which they sat down to enjoy a superlative performance by Nice, one of Nigeria’s current celebrated music stars followed by a welcome party that stretched far into the night, enabling them to meet, greet, mingle and exchange banters, amid tables filled with exquisite food and drinks from the company’s stable.

The next day was kicked off with a breakfast, health and business talks, followed with lunch, makeup, green carpets and picture sessions that preceded the major event of the awards and the unveiling of the new product and designs to the guests at the banquet hall of the hotel, which was filled to capacity with the guests.

The glittering presence of some of Nigeria’s A-list celebrities in the Nollywood and BBNaija brands, accentuated the kaleidoscope of colours from the gaily-dressed awardees, guests, management and staff of the company, as well as their friends and well-wishers, which blended with the interludes of musical performances to create the perfect concept of entertainment, enjoyment and pleasure. Aare Hope Gbagi, IDL’s Head of Sales, captured the raison d’etre of the event when he told the audience it was the company’s idea of rousing their major stakeholders – the distributors out of their daily routines of business to a different arena of relaxation, necessary for their physical and mental health, particularly considering the stiff and challenging economic situation in the country.


Congratulating the distributors, whom he said deserved special welcome for surviving the harsh business climate in the country, particularly the various challenges of the year 2022, Gbagi said: “This ceremony presents us with a unique opportunity to pull you our distributors out of your daily routines of buying and selling to a beautiful atmosphere to unwind and relax and by this idea, contribute our own quota in improving your mental health, which is part of our discussions earlier this morning.”

Elaborating on the necessity to fete the distributors, Engineer Patrick Anegbe, Managing Director of the company, said the event was a testament to the amazing partnership IDL shared and the impressive achievements both accomplished together in-spite of the unfavourable business environment in the country. He said: “Today, we embrace the theme “Beyond Limits” which perfectly reflects our collective journey of surpassing boundaries and pushing ourselves to new heights. Each and every one of you have steadfastly navigated through challenges and persevered in the face of adversity. Your dedication and unwavering commitment have uplifted our business to new levels of excellence. To be more specific, the Theme: ‘Beyond Limits,’ to you our distributors implies:

Experiencing products that go beyond your expectation.

Experiencing opportunities in sales of both successful and new brands for the growth and success of your business.

For us in IDL, the theme implies:

Showcasing innovative products.

Strengthening customer loyalty and building long term partnerships.

Highlighting the company’s commitment to continuous improvement and pushing limits.”


Speaking specifically on the challenges, Gbagi added: “One of the most significant challenges we faced as a manufacturing company and partners was the high cost of doing business. Market conditions became increasingly unstable; prices of input materials continued to rise almost on a daily basis; energy cost went up due to high cost of diesel. The foreign exchange (FX) required for raw materials, equipment and spares was not readily available and our roads continued to remain in deplorable state, making movement of goods from one part of the country to another difficult and expensive.

“Our dear business partners, despite the unfavourable business environment you had to contend with in 2022, your performance at the end of the year was impressive. This is indeed commendable and we are sincerely thankful to you all.

“IDL as a company also strived relentlessly in 2022 to tackle the challenges encountered head-on through strategic planning, operational efficiency and investment in technology. We have pioneered processes that empowered us to thrive in the face of adversity. To ensure more availability of our brands to our esteemed distributors the future, we have invested heavily in capacity building. You will therefore start to notice improvement in supplies of our products from the beginning of next year.

“We will continue to exhibit our strength in research, new products developments and innovative activities to keep our brands above others in Wines and Spirits industry in Nigeria and make doing business with us more interesting. I want to make a passionate appeal to our valued distributors to always ensure that you buy across the range of our brands whenever they make purchases. This will ensure improve growth and profitability for your business.”

The introduction of the Teezers cocktail brand, which also now comes in three flavours of orange, ginger and lemon to the audience, clearly underscored the reason IDL maintains a leading role in the entertainment industry, where premium drinks remain the major partner. The audience watched as the performance of a group of young men and women told the story of its re-launch through a breathtaking choreographic show, decked in suspense and eventual revelation.

Mobolaji Alalade, the company’s Head of Marketing, who put the show together, explained that the fresh move came out of the need to close the gap of the limited cocktail variants in Nigeria with the needs of the consumers.

Hear Alalade: “Today marks a new beginning – a beginning of changing the fun narratives within the Cocktail Sparkling Drink Category of the Wines and Spirit business in Nigeria and Africa at large.  This game changer is the relaunch of Teezers Lime/Lemon as well as the Teezers Apple Sparkling Cocktail Drink and the introduction of two brand new variants -the Orange Flavour and Lemon and Ginger Flavour which is non-alcoholic.

“With the limited variant options available within the Cocktail drink category, the highly youthful Nigeria population have been yearning for more fun options. Intercontinental Distillers Limited (IDL) equipped with research findings and consumer feedback rose up to the challenge of closing the gap and has now redefined the category with the revamp and consequently the relaunch of its already existing variants as well as the two new exciting additions – Teezers Orange for those who love the refreshing citrus flavour and the sense of energy its vibrant colour gives, while the Lemon and Ginger non-alcoholic flavour will cater specifically to children and teetotallers so as to ensure no one is left out.


“Today, Teezers Sparkling Cocktail Drink has been upgraded from 300ml to 400ml in a contemporary, trendy, easy to carry bottle definitely offering our Consumers more. The brand label has been redesigned in sync with the spirit of the new age while the logo now radiates the elegance and youthful fun filled nature of the brand.

“Apart from presenting to you the new look of Teezers and the new additions to its variant bouquet, we unveil our new marketing campaign ‘More fun’ which underscores the brand’s unique preposition as the Master of Fun. As such, the brand will be engaging directly with the core consumers across all leisure destinations at all touch points in Nigeria.”

Indeed, the event, packaged by ISO-BLACK Concept Limited, a vibrant multi-channel brand communication solution and support services concern, lived up to its billing as the Master of Fun in Nigeria. The huge success of the third edition of the agency’s involvement, which included the design, deployment and execution of all the programmes, not only underscored a full grasp of the environment, but provided a demonstrable evidence of taking the gown to town in the fun business.

For the over 300 distributors that were feted at the occasion, and others who did not make list,  the words of Dorothy Anegbe, Managing Director, Ogbohu Nigeria Enterprises, Sango Ota, Ogun State, who picked the star prize during the event, would continue to ring a bell. Anegbe said: “I pray that God should continue to be with them. They will grow from strength to strength and we will be able to come here and collect award.

How else to prove a partnership that works and the saying that indeed for IDL and its stakeholders, business and pleasure indeed do mix.

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Enugu Govt orders New Artisan cattle traders to remove residential structures within 7 days



• Rt. Hon. Anya addressing Leadership of New Artisan Market

…bans all markets from operating at night   

The Enugu state government has said that the era of sleeping in the New Artisan cattle market or any other market in the state is gone.

Addressing the leadership of Cattle traders at New Artisan Market on Thursday, the Chairman of Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA) Rt. Hon. Uche Anya said the move became necessary to stem the influx of criminal elements that have been dislodged from the cattle market at Lokpanta cattle market in Abia state.

Hon. Anya added that the decision is also in line with the determination of the administration of Governor Peter Mbah to make the state safe by providing adequate security to all and sundry.

The ECTDA Boss maintained that it’s necessary to agree on a time the market must close and a time for it to be opened for daily business, adding that the state government is ready to work with their own security arrangement after vetting them.

“This meeting is in line with the directive of the Governor on the need to secure your market and ensure that nobody comes into your market to start fermenting trouble. Your market will open in the morning and close in the evening just as it’s obtainable anywhere in the world.

“We don’t want anyone sleeping there again, we will provide security and we’re ready to work with your own security but we must register them after which they will be issued an identification card.

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“We don’t want any of those people to enter New Artisan Market and while at it, we will be at alert to ensure intruders don’t enter the market. We need Artisan market to be safe and clean!”


Dr. Anya while stating that this directive will be replicated in all the markets in the state irrespective of what is sold there, added that all forms of street trading in the state is prohibited.

He also added that those trading at the round-about should move inside the market as the area isn’t a market place and the taskforce will start implementation of the order very soon.

Responding, the chairman of the market, Danladi Abubakar raised the issue of the peculiarity of livestock market, adding that the current location of the market is a temporal place and those sleeping their have their families.

But the ECTDA boss maintained that security takes prominence in this discussion and nobody will be allowed to live in any place they’ve a market.

In his submission, the vice chairman of New Artisan Market, Alhaji Aminu pleaded with the state government to allow them get back to their people and come up with a time the market can open and close daily.

Hon. Anya who reiterated the human face of the government, urged them to take the state as their place and understand the premium the government is placing on security.

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