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RCCG Rose of Sharon Marks 25th Anniversary As It Renovates, Equips School Lab, Empowers 74

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In celebration of its 25th year anniversary and in furtherance of its Christian Social Responsibility (CSR), the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Rose of Sharon Parish, G.R.A Ikeja has renovated and equipped the Science Laboratory of a Lagos-based school and empowered 74 beneficiaries in its Business Expansion Support Programme.

These CSR initiatives are among the series of programmes lined up by the Church to mark the landmark anniversary celebration themed ‘Exceeding Greatness’. The programmes which began on Thursday with the commissioning of the newly refurbished and equipped Biology, Chemistry and Physics Laboratories of the State High School, located at Muiz Banire Street, Ikeja, ran through to today, Sunday 4th December 2021.

Speaking during the commissioning, the Senior Pastor-in-Charge of RCCG Rose of Sharon, Emeka Obiagwu, explained that the renovation and equipping of the laboratory among the initiatives lined up by the Church to mark the 25th anniversary of the parish as well as serve as part of the Christian Social Responsibly of the church aimed at positively impacting society.

Obiagwu, in his remarks, while noting that the science laboratories were rehabilitated with the sum of N15 million, added: “We thought it necessary to do something great for the community. We felt there is a need to touch lives and we felt it was important that we do a landmark project that 15 years from now will keep impacting people.

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“The burden was to ensure students learn in a conducive atmosphere. We set up a committee that went round to look for a landmark project and we identified that this school’s laboratory was in bad shape. We decided to refurbish, renovate and equip the laboratories,” he said.
The former Executive Chairman of the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) Pastor Babatunde Fowler, who is also from the Church and who was at the commissioning said the parish saw the need to help in providing a conducive environment for the students, to foster learning.
“It is clear that the government cannot do it all by itself, so we decided to partner with the government to provide a conducive learning environment for the students. We believe that as the government does its best and the private sector supports, the future of Nigeria, which are the students, will excel in their studies.

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The Commissioner of Education Lagos State, Folashade Adefisayo, who was represented by the Director, Science & Technology, Lagos State Ministry of Education, Ogunfuyi Hassan, commended the Rose of Sharon Parish for partnering with the government in upgrading the education system in Lagos State. Noting that partnerships like these are needed for the progress of Lagos, the Commissioner urged private bodies and religious organisations to borrow a leaf from the Church to push the frontiers of development in the state.

Speaking in the same vein of appreciation, the Principal, State Senior High School, Adeola George, applauded the church for their support and also the Lagos state government for encouraging partnership.

In a related development, the Church yesterday, empowered 74 beneficiaries in its Business Expansion Support Programme. A breakdown of this shows that 11 of these beneficiaries received Sewing machines while others who are Petty Traders, Soapmakers, Beautician, Caterers, Perfumers received various cash support between N50,000 – N100,000 to help boost their businesses.

Speaking exclusively on why the Church chose to use these CSR initiatives, Pastor Emeka said, “As a Church, CSR is in our DNA. We will continue to do that as long as we are on earth because that is the heartbeat of God. Our father in the Lord, Pastor E.A. Adeboye dreams, eats Christian Social Responsibility. Because of his passion, we have a Special Assistant to Daddy G.O on Corporate Social Responsibility who coincidentally, is the Head of Apapa Family, Pastor Idowu Iluyomade.

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“The Apapa family and Redeemed Christian Church of God have donated intensive care units in hospitals in Nigeria and engaged in many CSR activities too numerous to mention,” he revealed.

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Also in attendance at these CSR programmes are Former Head of Service, Lagos State Mrs. Olabowale Ademola; Minister-in-Charge CSR RCCG Rose of Sharon, Rosemary Fowler; HOD, CSR RCCG Rose of Sharon, Chukwuemeka Obi; Coordinator Business Expansion Programme, Gbolahan Adeosun and Former Principal RCCG Rose of Sharon Vocational School, Ronke Alayande, among other dignitaries.

Other events held to mark the celebration of the Church’s 25th anniversary include the Ikeja Mega Crusade Evening at the Arch Bishop Vining Grounds in G.R.A Ikeja on Saturday and the Celebration Service of the Rose of Sharon held today at the Church’s premises at 65, Adekunle Fajuyi Way, G.R.A, Ikeja.

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Naira appreciates against USD at forex market amid Binance clampdown

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Naira has returned to its appreciation against the US dollar in the foreign exchange market amid the restriction of Binance, a cryptocurrency platform.

Data from FMDQ showed that the Naira appreciated N1,609.51 at the close of trading on Wednesday from N1,615.94 on Tuesday.

This represents an N6.43 or 0.4 per cent appreciation compared to the N1,615.94 recorded at the closing of Tuesday’s trading.

Meanwhile, the Naira exchanged for N1,500 per USD on Wednesday at the parallel market from N1,618.489 on Tuesday.

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Naira Rates, the parallel market exchange rate, showed that the Naira appreciated 1,463.098 per USD on Wednesday.

The development triggered a massive selloff at the Binance Market.

Theheute recalls that Naira had continued its appreciation trend on Monday.

However, it depreciated against the USD on Tuesday for the first time since last week.

At the end of Tuesday’s 293rd Monetary Policy Committee meeting, the Central Bank of Nigeria governor, Olayemi Cardoso, reiterated his commitment to strengthen the Naira against USD at the forex market.

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The CBN had announced the resumption of foreign exchange sales directly to eligible Bureau De Change Operators.

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Ghana passes anti-gay law

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The Ghana Parliament, on Wednesday, passed the bill on human sexual rights and family values, commonly referred to as the anti-LGBTQ bill.

The bill, called the Promotion of Proper Human Sexual Rights and Ghanaian Family Values Bill, was introduced by Sam Nartey George, the MP for Ningo-Prampram.

Press reports that the bill was a Private Members Bill led by Sam Nartey George, the MP for Ningo-Prampram.

The bill prohibits LGBTQ activities and makes it illegal to promote, advocate, or fund them, as reported by Citi Newsroom.

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Local media also reports that individuals caught engaging in the activity could face a jail sentence ranging from six months to three years, while those who support or promote the activity may be sentenced to three to five years in prison.

This is coming after years of the bill being in parliament and going through various stages, facing backlash and efforts by opponents to block it or make changes.

In Ghana, homosexuality is currently prohibited by law and can result in a prison sentence of up to three years.

According to the new legislation, the maximum sentence will be extended to five years.

This proposal will also criminalise the distribution of materials that are considered supportive of LGBTQ rights.

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According to Citi Newsroom, Parliament approved the bill one day after Professor Audrey Gadzekpo, the Board Chair of the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development, urged President Nana Akufo-Addo to reject it.

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Takyiwaa Manuh, a senior fellow at the Ghana Centre for Democratic Development, mentioned to CBS News that Akufo-Addo has not approved any previous privately sponsored bills for legal reasons related to the country’s constitution.

According to Manuh, the speaker of the parliament did not conduct the necessary analysis of the bill.

She believes that if the bill becomes law, it will significantly impact the judiciary, police, and other areas of society.

“I am sad, disappointed and surprised that our commitment and democratic principles in this country appear to be so shallow.

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“This bill represents a real danger to our country, and we are looking to the president to uphold the values of our country and constitution,” she said.

The bill will need the President’s approval to take effect.

It remains uncertain whether President Akufo-Addo will approve the bill.

In 2021, the United Nations expressed concerns about the potential impacts of the proposed law, Human Sexual Rights and Family Values, warning that it could lead to state-sponsored discrimination and violence against sexual minorities.

In May 2023, Uganda implemented strict anti-LGBT legislation, which includes severe penalties such as the death penalty for certain homosexual acts.

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Elumelu in global academic limelight as TEF case study becomes Harvard’s curriculum

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In an unprecedented move, the Harvard Business School, the graduate business school of Harvard University, is set to cast the spotlight on the Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF), recognizing the Foundation’s extraordinary philanthropic achievement in a ground-breaking case study.

The case study, the first of its kind on any philanthropic organization in Africa, is to be launched on Thursday, February 29, 2024, before a class of graduate students in Boston, Massachusetts, and will explore the Foundation’s unique approaches and transformative initiatives, showcasing how strategic philanthropy offered by TEF is driving positive change and elevating countries and communities.

This move by Harvard underscores the Foundation’s pivotal role in empowering young African entrepreneurs across all 54 African countries and places the Foundation at the forefront of global discussions on transformative and catalytic philanthropy, acknowledging its significant contributions towards fostering entrepreneurship in Africa.

In addition to delving into the foundation’s innovative approaches and the resultant impact it has garnered over the years, the event will also feature an exclusive acknowledgment of the Founder of TEF, Tony Elumelu’s economic philosophy of Africapitalism, which positions the private sector, and most importantly entrepreneurs, as the catalyst for the social and economic development of the African continent.

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The Tony Elumelu Foundation is the leading philanthropy, empowering a new generation of African entrepreneurs, driving poverty eradication, catalyzing job creation across all 54 African countries, and increasing inclusive economic empowerment.

Since the launch of the TEF Entrepreneurship Programme in 2015, the Foundation has trained over 1.5 million young Africans on its digital hub, TEFConnect, and disbursed over USD$100 million in direct funding to 20,000 young African women and men, who have collectively created over 400,000 direct and indirect jobs.

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Tony Elumelu who spoke on the impact of TEF on the African youth said, “TEF is creating economic hope and opportunity for African Entrepreneurs. We know that entrepreneurship is the antidote to poverty, youth unemployment, and insecurity. Through the intervention of the Tony Elumelu Foundation, we are encouraging our young people, giving them hope through the seed capital we provide, capacitating them through the training and mentoring we provide, and setting them up to create businesses that will succeed and create even more jobs. Collectively we are fixing the challenges that we have on the continent.

Continuing, he said, “The Tony Elumelu Foundation was set up to create more successful African business leaders. We want to replicate our own success and create entrepreneurs who will build more prosperity on the continent and for the continent. It’s all about transforming our society and making sure that we leave society better than we met it. It is not about the money that we have in our bank accounts, it is about the legacy that we make and the impact we create. Prosperity for all is what will create the security, harmony, and peace that we need.”

The Harvard Business School session will provide a platform for thought leaders, scholars, and business enthusiasts to engage in a meaningful discussion on the role of philanthropy in shaping sustainable and inclusive economies. As the world grapples with complex challenges, the Tony Elumelu Foundation stands as a beacon of hope, showcasing how strategic philanthropy can be a driving force for positive change.

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