Nigeria Joins Infamous List of TW 14

Washington DC – US terror watch lists have been radically revised after a foiled attack on a US-bound jet, a White House spokesman said, as tough new airport screening measures swung into effect. No thanks to Farouk Mutallab who has dragged Nigeria’s name into the TW 14.

Officials had conducted a major review of all the lists that determine whether a person is allowed to board a US-bound flight in a foreign country, spokesman Bill Burton said.

The Terror Watch (TW) countries include Algeria, Lebanon, Syria, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Cuba and Nigeria.

The news came as President Barack Obama, who has denounced “systemic” intelligence failures in the Christmas Day plot, prepared to meet with US intelligence chiefs and security officials on Tuesday to review the findings of two probes into the plot.

Obama has directly linked the Al-Qaeda network, responsible for the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States, to the botched bid to blow up a Northwest jet with 290 people on board on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit.

The administration has also ordered tight new security measures for passengers flying to the United States after a 23-year-old Nigerian, Umar Farouk Abdul mutallab, allegedly tried to bring down the jet.

Travelers flying from or via 14 countries including Iran, Nigeria and Yemen will have to undergo mandatory enhanced screening before boarding their US-bound flights, under the new rules.

LAGOS – An atmosphere of fear and pity has descended on the banking industry following the retrenchment of 3500 staff by three banks within one week.


Oceanic Bank recently sacked over 1000 while the previous Friday Intercontinental Bank and UBA PLC sacked 1500 and 1000 respectively.

This development has occasioned an atmosphere of fear as most bankers now approach each day with trepidation not sure if that would not be the last day at work. Also bankers who were formerly the other of professionals have become the object of pity in the eyes of the public.

PMIs not granting loans for housing-NDIC

The performance of primary mortgage institutions (PMIs) in the discharge of their fundamental duty of providing of mortgage loans to Nigerians has been deemed woeful.

The review of the operations and performance of the PMIs in 2008 by the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) revealed that out of the N211.156 billion loan able funds available to the PMIs in 2008, only N36.47 billion representing 17.27 percent was granted as mortgage loans, well short of the required minimum of 60 percent.

According to the NDIC 2008 Annual Report, “Available statistics revealed that the PMIs had not been meeting the expectations of Nigerians in terms of granting mortgage loans.

CBN to revoke licenses of distressed microfinance banks

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, is to revoke the operating licenses of illiquid microfinance banks, MFBs, Vanguard investigations reveal. This, it was gathered, was part of the issues discussed at the recently held Committee of Microfinance Banks in Nigeria (COMBIN) meeting where the CBN told the affected institutions to brace up for the challenges ahead.

Investigation shows that a letter in respect of this directive has been sent by the apex bank to the affected institutions. The CBN in the letter mandated these MFBs to temporarily stop receiving deposits or giving out loans until they either recapitalize or merge with a stronger bank to form a strong MFB.

Fuel Scarcity: Marketers Defy FG, Sell at N100 per Litre

As fuel queues at filling stations are gradually reducing, major marketers of petroleum products are still selling a litre of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) at N100, in defiant of the Federal Government’s directive that the official pump price of N65 per litre should prevail.

The Federal Government had on the eve of Christmas, directed the Department of Petroleum Resources (DPR) to mount 24-hour surveillance on filling stations across the country, to ensure their strict compliance to official pump price.

Oceanic, Intercontinental to sack more workers

THE ongoing mass purge in banks will continue this week as many of the bank workers will not resume at their respective desks after the New Year celebrations. Nigerian Tribune gathered that despite protests by the Ministry of Labour and Productivity, labour movements and civil societies, some of the banks are set to commence the second round of lay-offs this week.

Also, some of the banks like Afribank, which had earlier decided against staff rationalisation, have suddenly changed their minds in the light of the present developments.

Investigations by the Nigerian Tribune indicated that the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN’s) eight managed banks were set to fully implement the directive of the apex bank to reduce their workforce by 30 per cent. Though the CBN governor, Mallam Lamido Sanusi, had denied issuing such a directive, analysts opined that non-condemnation of the sack by the apex bank since its resurgence was a clear indication of its tacit endorsement.



DETROIT – A Nigerian man identified as Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab who said he was an agent for al-Qaida tried to blow up a Northwest (Delta) Airlines plane Friday as it was preparing to land in Detroit, but travelers who smelled smoke and heard what sounded like firecrackers rushed to subdue him, according to passengers and federal officials.

Flight 253 with 278 passengers and 11 crew members aboard was about 20 minutes from the airport when passengers heard popping noises, witnesses said. At least one person climbed over others and jumped on the man. Shortly afterward, the suspect was taken to the front of the plane with his pants cut off and his legs burned, a passenger said. Law enforcement officials said the burns indicated the explosive was strapped to his legs.

One U.S. intelligence official said the explosive device was a mix of powder and liquid. It failed when the passenger tried to detonate it.

Latest unconfirmed reports claim that the suspected bomber has family ties with Dr. Umaru Abdul Mutallab, former First Bank Chairman. The suspect who is currently under guard at a Detroit hospital is reported to be an engineering student at the University College, London.

source: agency reports

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