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Five things to know to start your Thursday

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Labour unions to call off protests after meeting with Tinubu – FG confirms

Following a meeting with President Bola Tinubu at the State House, Abuja, on Wednesday evening, labour leaders, including the President of the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) Joe Ajaero and Trade Union Congress (TUC) Festus Usifo, have decided to halt further protests, this is according to the presidency.

The meeting took place immediately after the nationwide protest conducted by the unions.

Minutes after the meeting, Dele Alake, outgoing Special Adviser to the President on Communication and Strategy, in a statement confirmed that the labour leaders have expressed confidence in President Tinubu’s commitment to addressing the issues raised by the Labour Movement.

They agreed to engage constructively with the government to resolve outstanding matters concerning the welfare of workers and Nigerians in general.

Read more: Labour Unions to call off protests after meeting with Tinubu; FG Confirms

FCCPC orders Google to delist 18 illegal loan apps

Six days after BusinessDay released an article on ‘Loan shark victims recall experiences as FCCPC steps in’, the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) decided to take action by ordering Google to delete Getloan, Swiftkash, and 16 others from the Play Store.

According to the commission, other apps include JoyCash-Loan up to 1 million, Camellia, Cashhlawn, Nairaloan, Eaglecash, Moneytreefinance MadeEasy, Luckyloan Personal loan, Cashme, Easynaira, Swiftcash, Crediting, Hen credit loan, Nut loan, Cash door, Cashpal, and Naireasy gist loan.

Read more:FCCPC orders Google to delist 18 illegal loan apps

Jigawa, NEPZA agree to revitalise state’s free trade

Jigawa State Government and Nigeria Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA) have reached an agreement to breathe new life into the Maigatari Export Processing Zone in the state. This decision was made during a meeting between Jigawa State Governor, Umar Namadi, and NEPZA’s Managing Director, Adesoji Adesugba, held on Wednesday in Abuja.

Governor Namadi emphasized that the Maigatari Free Trade Zone (FTZ) holds immense potential and offers significant benefits to both the local populace and the nation as a whole, urging for its operationalization.

“We have an idle free zone that has been dormant for quite some time, and it is essential to put it into action,” said the governor. “We believe that NEPZA is the ideal starting point for this endeavor, and that’s why we promptly sought the managing director’s counsel and support.”

During the meeting, the Jigawa State delegation sought expert advice from NEPZA on how to kickstart operations at the free zone. Additionally, they appealed for the managing director’s backing regarding licenses and registration fees, acknowledging the outstanding dues and expressing hope for a flexible payment arrangement to facilitate a smooth resumption of operations.

Modular floating dock: NIMASA takes over continental shipyard

Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) has officially taken control of the areas leased to it by the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) at the Continental Shipyard to commence operations of the Modular Floating Dock. The handover ceremony took place in Lagos, as stated by NIMASA’s Director General, Bashir Jamoh.

The handed-over areas encompass the dolphin jetty, waterfront adjoining the slipway, an administrative block, and various workshops for construction, welding, mechanical, and civil maintenance purposes.

Jamoh emphasized that this transfer marked the final stage in NIMASA’s efforts to deploy the modular floating dockyard. He assured stakeholders that any concerns between NIMASA and the NPA had been resolved, clearing the way for the imminent deployment of the dock.

Niger junta says it will not back down despite ‘inhumane’ sanctions

The self-proclaimed new leader of Niger asserted on Wednesday that the junta would not yield to pressure to reinstate ousted President Mohamed Bazoum, escalating the standoff with the West African bloc.

The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) had imposed sanctions on Niger and threatened to intervene if Bazoum’s presidency was not restored within a week from the previous Sunday’s coup.

A delegation from ECOWAS arrived in Niger for negotiations with the military officers who seized power, aiming to seek a diplomatic resolution before considering intervention.

In a televised address, Abdourahamane Tiani rejected the sanctions and interference in Niger’s internal affairs.

ECOWAS, which has vowed to halt democratic backslides, views the military option as a last resort while preparing for the possibility.