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Sustainable Dividends: Forte Oil Shareholders Task New Management

Sustainable Dividends: Forte Oil Shareholders Task New Management

Shareholders of Forte Oil (FO) Plc on Tuesday, 25th June, 2019 tasked the new management of the company on continuous payment of dividend and adherence to good corporate governance.

The shareholders made the demand in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on expectations from the new management team following Mr Femi Otedola’s divestment.

Mr Moses Igbrude, the Publicity Secretary of  Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), told NAN that the new management needed to map out strategies to ensure higher returns.

Igbrude said that shareholders were expecting continuous returns on their investments and ensure adherence to corporate governance rules and market regulations.

“I appeal to them to manage the company properly, effectively and efficiently as expected in order to ensure yearly payment of dividend,’’ he said.

Igbrude said that the money realised from the sale of the power unit should be properly utilised to add value to the company.

According to him, the company should focus on the lubricant aspect of the business because that is where there is reasonable margin compared to the petrol business.

“They should make sure that their service stations look attractive, ensure high quality products and ensure the integrity of their pumps are superb so that customers will make them the first choice when buying fuel,’’ Igbrude said.

Mr Boniface Okezie, the National Coordinator of Progressive Shareholders Association of Nigeria (PSAN), said that the company needed to improve on its dividend payment to ensure price rally on the nation’s bourse.

Okezie said that the company should ensure prompt release of both quarterly and audited yearly results to avoid unnecessary sanctions from the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The shareholder-activist said that the investing public and the stockbrokers should be carried along in the company’s operations through regular releases of information.

NAN reports that FO on June 20 appointed new Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer following the completion of the sale of Mr Femi Otedola’s shares in the firm’s downstream operations.

The firm announced that Mr Olumide Adeosun and Mr Moshood Olajide had been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer, respectively, after the resignation of Mr Akin Akinfemiwa and Mr Julius Omodayo-Owotuga.

Forte Oil, in a notice filed with the Exchange said Ignite Investments and Commodities Limited, led by Prudent Energy Services Limited, had completed the acquisition of Otedola’s 74.02 per cent shareholding.

According to the firm, the completion is consequent upon Ignite receiving all the necessary approvals from SEC, NSE and fulfilling all relevant terms and conditions attached to the Share Purchase Agreement.

It said, “As a result of this and further to the announcement on Dec. 28, 2018, Ignite will take over controlling stake in Forte Oil Plc, the downstream company“. 

Traders seek urgent repair of Lagos-Badagry expressway
Some traders plying Lagos-Seme road have urged the Federal Government to repair the Lagos-

Badagry expressway and lift the ban on importation of vehicles through the land borders.

The traders made the appeal in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos on Tuesday.

A commercial driver plying between Seme and Cotonou,  Mr Joy Sagbohan, said the deteriorating state of the road had affected his business.

“Many of our customers now prefer to go through Idiroko to Cotonou instead of going through Seme border.

“Before the road got worse, I usually realised between N20, 000 to N15, 000 daily, but now I hardly realise between N2, 500 to N1, 500 after fueling the bus.

“It is difficult for me to repair my vehicle due to the low income as a result of bad roads from Lagos to Badagry.

“My colleagues and I are facing a lot of challenges encountering immigration officers,  but we have a good relationship with the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS); they do not inconvenience us in any form,” Sogbohan said.

Another driver,  Mr Mamudu Paraiso, urged Nigerian government to caution some its agencies to stop extorting travellers at the border areas.

“Since the Economic Community of West African States has told the two countries to encourage free movement from the border areas, some Nigeria regulatory agencies still extort money to allow movement into Nigeria area.

“Since the borders have been closed to importation of vehicles, car dealers are no longer coming to board our vehicles to Cotonou,” Paraiso said.

He urged government to open the border posts for importation of vehicles to enable traders and commercial motorists to earn some income to feed their families.

Mrs Nofisat Kareem, a former cosmetics dealer who ended up as a pure water seller, said she change her business because she could no longer make profit from cosmetics.

She said she was trading between Lagos International Trade fair areas to Seme.

Kareem said she had no option than to go into pure water business to enable her feed her children.

Another trader, Mrs Mercy Jude,  also lamented the poor state of Lagos-Badagry express road, saying  that she used to  travel once a week on the route to buy Dettol disinfectant in Lagos.

She urged government to look into multiple checkpoints along the routes mounted by Nigerian officials extorting money from the traders.

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