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•Says VAT removal on LPG price not yet implemented

•Company opens new filling station along Lagos-Ibadan expressway

The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Petrocam Trading Nigeria Limited, Mr. Patrick Ilo, has called on the federal government to urgently address the wide margin in petrol prices being enjoyed solely by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) to the disadvantage of its competitors in the business.

The oil marketer made the call yesterday, at the inauguration of Petrocam’s new retail outlet located within the neighborhood of the popular Redeemed Camp, along the busy Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Ogun State.

 

He spoke against the background of the continuous yearning by petroleum marketers for full deregulation of the petrol marketing business and total abolition of subsidy regime, revealing that the implementation of the removal of Valued-Added Tax (VAT) on imported Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) was yet to happen.

 

He argued that government needed to be more concerted in ensuring that there was a better level playing ground that grants all the operators, both NNPC and the private players equal opportunity in the industry.

 

He further argued that a situation where NNPC was not coming clean and clear about their pricing method when it was in the same market with others was not acceptable.

 

Although, President Bola Tinubu had announced the removal of petrol subsidy during his inauguration on May 29, 2023, which led to the surge in prices from then N185 to the current N617 and above, the pump price still falls below the actual international market price.

Industry players and analysts had repeatedly posited that the current petrol price in Nigeria when factored against the landing cost and other market fundamentals could rise to between N700 to N800 per litre.

 

In its latest Nigeria Development Update released on December 13, 2023, the World Bank, which hailed the fuel subsidy removal as a key policy that would drive economic growth in the country, had however, suggested that fuel pump price should be N750 per litre as opposed to the current N617 per litre.

 

But speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the company’s retail outlet opening, the Petrocam boss called for the resolution of the undue price margin, which he argued NNPC had over other players.

 

Ilo stated, “Government needs to actually be more concerted. There should be a better level playing ground. A situation where NNPC is not coming clean and clear about how they are doing their pricing while we are all in the same market is not acceptable.

 

“We are in a commodity market. Price differences between competition A and B should just be marginal. Where there is a much larger margin between what A and B sells, then there is no transparency. Government should come clear. Government should not compete in a way that will undermine private sector. We are borrowing from the banks.

 

“Our bottom line is important and if we make losses, we all go down. Government is not in the business of doing business. And the best they should do is to get out of business. They should be regulators and not business people.”

 

On the issue of removal of VAT on imported LPG, popularly known as cooking gas, he said that was yet to happen.

 

Ilo, maintained that the policy still exists, saying as a policy statement they hoped it would soon be implemented by government, arguing that once done, the policy could lead to the crash of LPG price.

 

“And I am so sure, after a period of time, we are going to pass all this to customers. Prices are coming down. We want people to live a better life. Cooking should be a good experience.

 

“Nobody in this country should go hungry. And we are part of it in making sure we do our best in making sure that we roll down prices all the time. And that’s where we are,” he noted.

 

While sharing his assessment of the downstream sector for 2023, Ilo stated that the petroleum marketing business was in an undulating period like any other business.

 

He explained that the stakeholders were actually catching up with new policies, pointing out that the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) had just started and everybody was adjusting to it.

 

He said the industry was vibrant and that things were going to happen differently.

 

Adding that government was doing its best to reposition the sector, the oil marketer stated that they were going to plug into the beauty of what government’s initiatives, forecasting that the industry would be more super in 2024.

 

“There is going to be a level playing ground for everybody and competition will be strengthened and the best is for the customers. We are here for customers. I would like to see an increase in the pump price. It can increase. It can decrease because it has to leverage on international market price”, Ilo stated.

 

Speaking on the new retail outlet strategically built by Petrocam to serve teeming commuters on one of Nigeria’s busiest expressways, as well as residents of the community, Ilo said the multi-mega station has the facilities needed to serve many customers at a time.

 

With 18 pumps in the outlet, he said each terminal dispensing pumps could fill two cars at a time, adding that products ranging from petrol, diesel, kerosene, LPG and lubricants were available at the station.

 

“It’s a ritual. This is what we know how to do best and we’ve been doing this now and again. So it’s nothing new to us. Something very new and unique is that it’s more spiritual because we are in front of the Redeemed Camp where a lot of people come and take blessings. And it’s very significant.

 

“And we believe that because it is in an ordained area, we are sure that we will make profit. It is God that teaches us how to make profit and we shall do it here,” he explained.

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Business

Baba Adinni and Iya Adinni: Harmony Gardens Chairman and Wife Inducted into Spiritual Roles

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In a momentous occasion of spiritual significance and community recognition, the Chairman of Harmony Gardens and Estates Development LTD, Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa, popularly known as Mr. Ibile, and his wife, Hadjia Aishat Adebimpe, were recently installed with revered titles at an event hosted by the Al-Irshad Islamic Foundation.

 

Hon Saheed Mosadoluwa Ibile inaugurated a multi-billion naira ultra-modern Central Mosque at Ibeju-Lekki immidiately after he got recognized by the West Africa Islamic Council as the AL Mujaddid in Rabbat, Morocco.

 

According to popular Muslim tradition, the term refers to an individual who emerges at the turn of each century in the Islamic calendar to rejuvenate Islam, purging it of extraneous elements and restoring it to its original purity. In contemporary times, a mujaddid is regarded as the preeminent Muslim figure of a century.

 

The concept of Mujaddid is based on a hadith (a saying of Islamic prophet Muhammad), recorded by Abu Dawood, narrated by Abu Hurairah who mentioned that Muhammad said:

 

Allah will raise Mujaddid for this community at the end of every 100 years the one who will renovate its religion for it.

 

Recall that in a grand ceremony attended by distinguished personalities and spiritual leaders, Hon Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa, Chairman and CEO of Harmony Gardens and Estates Development LTD, officially commissioned and handed over a state-of-the-art central mosque in Ibeju-Lekki, Lagos State, on Friday, January 19th, 2024.

 

The auspicious event witnessed the presence of esteemed religious leaders, including Sheik Semiu .A. Opeloyeru, The Grand Chief Imam and General President of the League of Imam and Alfa in Ibeju-Lekki L.G.A. The ceremony commenced with the arrival of Sheik Semiu .A. Opeloyeru, setting the tone for a day of spiritual significance and community celebration.

 

Representing the executive governor of Lagos State, His Excellency Babajide Sanwoolu, was Hon. Ahmed Abdulai Jembe, the Special Adviser on Islamic Affairs to the governor, graced the ceremony. The Onibeju in attendance emphasizing the significance of the event in the cultural and traditional context.

 

The event saw the attendance of various traditional rulers, highlighting the communal and inclusive nature of the mosque inauguration. Notably, the newly appointed Lagos NURTW Chairman, Mustapha Sego, drew attention as his presence added an extra layer of recognition to the occasion.

 

However, the prestigious ceremony, held at Monarch Hall in Osapa London Lekki, Lagos State, saw Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa bestowed with the title of Baba Adinni, signifying a revered position within the religious community. His wife, Hadjia Aishat Adebimpe, was similarly honored as Iya Adinni, a title of great respect and responsibility.

 

The Al-Irshad Islamic Foundation, under the guidance of its founder Sheik Rasheed Adeleke, who is also the owner of Al-Irshad Travel and Tours, organized the event as a Pre-Ramadan lecture, award ceremony, and Turbaning ceremony. The atmosphere was filled with spiritual fervor and communal joy as community members gathered to witness the momentous occasion.

 

Notably, Abu Abel and other prominent figures, was also present at the event, adding to the significance of the gathering. The ceremony, held on Sunday, February 25th, 2024, brought together individuals from diverse backgrounds to celebrate the exemplary contributions of Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa and his wife to both the community and the Islamic faith.

 

The Turbaning ceremony, a traditional rite of passage within the Islamic community, symbolizes a deep connection with cultural heritage and spiritual leadership. The titles of Baba Adinni and Iya Adinni carry great responsibilities, signifying the honorees’ commitment to serving the community and upholding the values of the Islamic faith.

 

As the community celebrates this significant event, the installation of Hon. Dr. Saheed Audullahi Mosadoluwa and Hadjia Aishat Adebimpe as Baba Adinni and Iya Adinni reflects their exemplary leadership and commitment to the principles of Harmony Gardens and Estate Development LTD. The event serves as a beacon of unity, spirituality, and communal recognition within the Osapa London in Lekki community.

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Business

Squad Powers OmniPay’s Trade Business to Simplify Payments for FMCG Industry

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In a strategic move aimed at furthering its mission to empower African traders with the necessary payment solutions for thriving in the digital era, Squad, a fintech subsidiary of Guaranty Trust Holding Company Plc (GTCO), offering comprehensive payment and e-commerce solutions for businesses, has entered a partnership with OmniPay, a subsidiary of OmniRetail Inc.

 

This collaboration has currently benefited more than 65,000 stakeholders, which include retailers, distributors, and manufacturers through improved payment and collection methods using Squad’s Virtual Bank Account without incurring any charges. Additionally, they have gained more accessible and affordable working capital to procure goods on credit for their businesses, contributing to the daily transaction volume exceeding N3 billion, and this figure continues to grow.

 

Adeyemi Atanda, the Chief Marketing Officer, Squad, shared insights on the partnership’s significance, emphasizing, “At Squad, our mission revolves around providing African businesses with the right solutions for effortless payment processes, available at their convenience. We understand the pivotal role small businesses play in our economy. Through strategic alliances like this, we aim to empower even more merchants by granting them access to rapid, user-friendly, and dependable payment solutions that optimize their business operations and, in turn, boost their revenue.”

 

Deepankar Rustagi, CEO of OmniRetail stated, “As we join forces with Squad, we are driven by our shared vision of transforming the digital payment landscape for African businesses. With OmniPay, businesses will gain improved payment methods with zero transfer fees, while retailers and distributors will have easier access to OmniPay’s BNPL (Buy Now Pay Later) solution. This partnership aims to empower businesses, streamline payment processes, and enhance record-keeping accuracy through automated reconciliation for orders. This partnership reinforces OmniRetail’s commitment to innovation and financial inclusion.”

 

About Squad

 

Squad is a complete payment solution that is reliable, secure, and affordable, making receiving in-person and online payments simple and convenient.

 

Our goal is to support SMEs, micro-merchants, large corporations, and other fintechs (Tech Stars) with the tools they need to thrive in an evolving digital economy and expand beyond their current market reach.

 

Squad’s current products and service offerings include SquadPOS, Squad Payment Links, Squad Virtual Accounts, USSD, and E-Commerce Storefront.

 

Find out more at www.squadco.com.

 

About OmniPay

 

OmniPay, a subsidiary of OmniRetail Inc., is a company with a mission to simplify payments in Nigeria and provide working capital to trade businesses. OmniPay provides an API-based wallet built to simplify trade payments.

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