The companies stated this in a statement to their shareholders and stakeholders posted on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) web site.
UBA’s 58th AGM was initially slated for 27 March, at the Eko Hotels & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, while Transcorp was supposed to hold on March 25.
“The Board of Directors of United Bank for Africa Plc hereby announces the cancellation of the Notice of Meeting of the 58th Annual General Meeting dated March 2, 2020.
“Consequently, the 58th Annual General Meeting which was previously scheduled to be held on Friday, March 27, 2020 at the Eko Hotels & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos is hereby postponed.
“The cancellation of the notice and postponement of the AGM are hinged on part of UBA’s measures, as a good Corporate Citizen, to avoid the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
“A new Notice of Annual General Meeting of the Bank will be published in due course.
“In this trying and uncertain period, the Board of United Bank for Africa Plc would like to assure all our customers, shareholders and other stakeholders that we are here for you throughout the crisis and beyond,” said Bill Odum, the bank’s Group Company Secretary.
In a related development, Transcorp in a statement signed by Chike Anikwe, its Group acting Company Secretary, said the postponement of the meeting was due to novel COVID-19.
Anikwe stated that the meeting earlier scheduled for March 25, had been postponed till
He noted that the recent developments on COVID-19 and the need to follow the guidelines provided by the World Health Organisation, the National Centre for Disease Control and the Federal Government amongst others, led to the postponement.
In tweets to shareholders, UBA affiliated companies, Afriland Properties and Africa Prudential also announced the cancellations of their Annual General meetings scheduled for today in Abuja.
They include 5.4 million face masks, kits for 1.08 million detection tests, 40,000 sets of protective clothing and 60,000 sets of protective face shields, according to the Jack Ma Foundation.
The supplies will first be distributed to countries throughout Africa which are particularly vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The remaining 600,000 masks are expected to reach Addis Ababa and be distributed to more African nations over the next few weeks, it said.
The relief initiative forms part of Jack Ma Foundation and Alibaba Foundation’s ongoing efforts to contain the spread of the COVID-19 and provide aid to afflicted communities across the globe.
Earlier this week, the foundations had announced their commitment to donating 100,000 medical masks, 20,000 test kits and 1,000 protective suits and face shields to each of the 54 nations on the African continent. The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases across Africa has climbed to 1,114 as 40 African countries reported confirmed cases as of Saturday afternoon, the Africa Center for Disease Control and Prevention disclosed on Saturday.
Collaboration and partnership with the Alibaba-led Electronic World Trade Platform (eWTP) hubs in Ethiopia and Rwanda is expected to prompt the distribution across Africa. The flight with the shipment landed at the eWTP hub in Ethiopia, which will help facilitate transport and distribution of donations throughout the continent. “Getting these donations to all 54 African countries, with diverse geographic conditions and different levels of infrastructure, is a great logistical and transportation challenge. We are working around the clock to make the delivery as fast as possible. ” according to a Jack Ma Foundation statement. “With our technology and eWTP Hubs, we are doing our utmost to quickly deliver these donations, so the supplies can reach those who need them most,” added Song Juntao, Secretary-General of eWTP.
This donation is part of global efforts that the Jack Ma and Alibaba Foundations have promoted to support the areas of the world most affected by the COVID-19 crisis, sourcing and delivering various types of medical supplies to countries such as China, Japan, South Korea, United States, Italy, Belgium, France, Spain, the Netherlands and Slovenia. Established by Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba Group, the Jack Ma Foundation was founded in 2014 and has been focusing on education, entrepreneurship, women’s leadership, and the environment.
Nigeria, France, Germany flights would be suspended from March 23 until further notice, a company email said.
Flights to New York JFK and New Jersey’s Newark EWR would be suspended from March 24 until further notice, another company email said.
The airline did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.
Emirates, which has already suspended dozens of routes, said in the emails it was halting the routes because of the virus epidemic that has shattered global travel demand.
Prof. Uche Uwaleke, a professor of Finance and Capital Market at the Nasarawa State University said the devaluation of the nation’s currency by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) will discourage round-tripping and return of foreign investors.
He said the devaluation would have positive implications for financial markets.
Uwaleke added that the development would encourage return of foreign investors who left our financial market because of multiple exchange rates.
On the flip side, he noted that the development would have negative implications for inflation and the 2020 budget predicted on N305 per dollar.
Prof. Sheriffdeen Tella, Professor of Economics, Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago-Iwoye, Ogun, said the news of the naira devaluation was not surprising but was unfortunate.
“The pressure in the foreign exchange market we have witnessed in the last few weeks was not caused by the demand for foreign currency to buy inputs for production.
“It’s from people who are trying to hold foreign currency either for the speculative purpose for possible travels or to lodge the same in their foreign accounts where BVN is not available to reveal their identities.
“So, devaluing the currency will encourage further speculative attack on the naira. Haven emptied the sovereign wealth fund (SWF) account and Excess crude account, the CBN should not have taken this panic measure now that the recession has not taken root in the economy.
“It was a wrong move that was not based on the causal factor of the foreign currency demand pressure,” Tella said.
The Central Bank of Nigeria said it merely adjusted the price of Naira and did not devalue it as reported.