Dangiwa To Flag Off Construction Of 2,000 Housing Units In 8 States


In continuation of the groundbreaking ceremonies for Renewed Hope Cities and Estates, the minister of Housing and Urban Development, Arc. Ahmed Musa Dangiwa, is set to officially flag-off construction work for additional 2,000 housing units in eight states in the South and North Central zones of the country.

States slated for the exercise include Ebonyi, Abia, Akwa Ibom as well as Delta, Osun, Oyo, Benue and Nasarawa.

The nationwide groundbreaking exercise according to a press statement signed by the Minister’s special assistant on Media and Strategy, Mark Chieshe, is sequel to the official launch of the housing programme by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu in February 2024, with the inauguration of 3,112 housing units in Karsana, Abuja and the successful groundbreaking of 1,500 housing units in five states in the north comprising Katsina, Yobe, Gombe, Sokoto and Kano from 22nd to 25th May 2024.

The schedule for the flag-off of construction activities will begin with 250 housing units in Ebonyi on Wednesday, 26th June 2024, followed by 250 units in Abia on Thursday, 27th June 2024 then 250 units in Akwa Ibom on Friday, 28th June 2024; and 250 units in Delta State on Saturday, 29th June 2024.

Others are 250 units in Osun (Tuesday 2nd July 2024), 250 units in Oyo (Wednesday 3rd July 2024), 250 units in Benue (Friday 5th July 2024), and 250 units in Nasarawa (Saturday 6th July 2024), bringing the total to 2,000 housing units in the eight states.

“the houses will be built in line with approved organic designs to allow eventual off-takers expand from one bedroom to two bedrooms, and from two bedrooms to three bedrooms as incomes increase over time. This design was adopted to enhance affordability for Nigerians.”

“The housing projects also seek to promote inclusivity and integration and address inequalities by providing a broad range of affordable homeownership options. This includes single digit and up to 30-year mortgage loans to be provided by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, Rent-to-Own options where beneficiaries can move in and pay towards homeownership in monthly, quarterly, or annual instalments and Outright Purchase for high income earners.”

“Beyond providing shelter for low-and-medium-income Nigerians, the housing construction is a major stimulus for the local economy, it is estimated to create over 50, 000 skilled and unskilled jobs I the states, supporting livelihoods, and developing the larger economy,” Arc. Dangiwa said.



Unified Payments Targets 99.9% Service Delivery As PTSA Licence Holder


Unified Payments Services Limited (also known as Unified Payments), Nigeria’s premier fintech service provider, has targeted 99.9 per cent payment terminal service delivery, as the country’s second Payment Terminal Service Aggregator (PTSA) licence holder.

Recall that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), through a public bid process in its publication of Friday, January 5, 2024, called on different operators to bid and compete for the PTSA licence. Following a rigorous and transparent process, the CBN awarded the second PTSA license to Unified Payments Services Limited.

The managing director and CEO of Unified Payments, Mr. Agada Apochi, at a media parley, over the weekend, in Lagos, discussed the future prospects of the new licence obtained by the company, while assuring seamless, simple and effective ecosystem, free from financial crimes and other market misconduct.

Apochi disclosed that since obtaining the PTSA licence, Unified Payments has rolled out plans, adding that different operators have connected to its PTSA platform, for the purpose of ensuring seamless and secured transactions. “As a PTSA licence holder, we are improving national infrastructure. Our approach to the market is not that of competition. We do not see ourself as competitor, but as an enabler. Our PTSA platform is for everyone to collaborate, co-habit and grow payment services in Nigeria,” he revealed.

Speaking on the role of Unified Payments as a PTSA, the CEO said, “Our role is that of an enabler, to help different industry operators and service providers offer their services and solutions in compliance with policy and regulatory frameworks as defined by CBN. We as PTSA will help the government, through the CBN, to have an oversight over transactions that happened at the Point of Sales (POS) and through that, we will be able to help members of the public to manage different misconducts.”

He highlighted the inability to have full oversight over transactions, as a major challenge in the e-payment industry. Explaining further, Apochi said, “When transactions don’t go through, it was difficult to follow such transactions. For instance, you withdraw money from an agent or you made a purchase at a marchant. You have been debited but the money has not dropped in the seller’s account. It was difficult to say that the transactions must have gone through a PTSA. As a business offering services to the public or as a member of the public that use such services, there is no certainty that when transactions go wrong, you can be certain where the money is.

“With this licence however, all online transactions have to go through PTSA, making it easier to follow the money and that means there will be greater level of confidence on e-payment industry, not just by members of the public that are users, but for businesses that offer the service, regulators and law enforcement agencies. When there is a verifiable footprint of transactions at POS, then it becomes possible to trace fraudsters.”

On how quickly an issue can be resolved, the CEO said there are industry standards, adding that the commitment from Unified Payments, as a platform that enable businesses to do transactions at POS devices, is that, there will be 99.9 per cent service availability. “If the service is available and transactions don’t fail, then we will not be discussing reversal of fund. For reversal of fund to happen, it means there is first, a service failure, which we are tackling with this new license,” he posited.

With only two PTSA license holders in Nigeria, Apochi assured that payment services will be more effective, while seeking collaboration from all stakeholders in the industry. “There are only two PTSA license holders in Nigeria and since obtaining the license, we have been talking with the other aggregator, to define areas of collaboration, so that we work together and build a bigger ecosystem that is safer, more resilient and meet the needs and aspirations of different businesses that will be using our platforms.”



EU-Nigeria Business Forum To Promote Bilateral Trade, Investment Stability


The Nigerian and European business leaders, policy makers and institutional stakeholders will converge on Abuja on July 2 to identify and explore investment opportunities along specific value chains during the 9th European Union-Nigeria Business Forum.

The Forum, which is holding in the federal capital for the first time, is being organised by the EU Delegation to Nigeria and ECOWAS, in close coordination with EU member states and the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment.

It will be organised under the theme “Investing in jobs and a sustainable future,” at Abuja’s Continental Hotel.

The EU Ambassador to Nigeria and ECOWAS, Samuela Isopi, said the Business Forum, aside from fostering engagement between businesses, policymakers, and stakeholders from Nigeria and the EU, will also facilitates trade, investment, and partnerships through networking, discussions, and policy shaping, to promote economic cooperation between the EU and Nigeria and stimulate sustainable growth for both parties.

“It is important to note that for the first time since its inception, the 2024 edition of the EU-Nigeria Business Forum will be held in Abuja. This will provide an opportunity for the EU, its Member States and the private sector from Europe and Nigeria to engage the new administration on their investment agendas in a transparent and inclusive manner, with a view to fostering confidence and commitment to a stronger and sustainable partnership.”

As part of the EU Global Gateway Strategy, she explained, EU-funded projects will complement private sector investment in areas, which bring about critical social, economic, and environmental sustainability.


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NEMSA Inspects 21,681 Electricity Installations, Certifies 13,154

Seeks establishment of electricity offences tribunal

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The Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) has inspected and tested over 21,681 electricity installations, certified 13,154 of them, and monitored 16,624 electricity networks as at March 31, 2024.

The agency has also inspected and certified over 4,921 factories, hazardous installations, and public places

Also, it is seeking the establishment of an electricity offences tribunal for faster dispensation of electricity related offences.Stunned by thousands of storks flying over the sky in Gia Viễn dike, Ninh Bình – Nếm TV

The managing director of NEMSA, Aliyu Tahir, who made this known in Abuja on Thursday at a news conference , said that the tribunal should have an in-built appeal system.

Tahir said that NEMSA in house-counsel should be vested with powers to prosecute electricity offences.

“The establishment of this tribunal will assist NEMSA to enforce its mandate of ensuring that electrical materials, equipment and instruments used in the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) are of standard and specifications.

“The sanctioning of violators is a long process as it involves several steps .To fast- track the prosecution, this tribunal will go a long in ensuring that violators are effectively prosecuted

“The establishment of this tribunal is not under NEMSA Purveyor and we have made a submission to the legislature on this, ‘’ he said.

According to him, as at March 31, NEMSA had inspected and tested 21, 681 electricity installations projects out of which 13, 154 were certified.

He said that 16, 624 electricity networks were monitored, adding that about 4, 921 factories, hazardous installations and public places were inspected, tested and certified fit,

Tahir said that 2, 655,488 electricity meters were also tested and calibrated and 487 incidences were investigated.

The managing director said that NEMSA was taking several measures to enhance its enforcement activities.

He listed the measures to include the development of the Nigerian electrical and construction guidelines manuals, provision of the state-of-the art equipment for meter test statistics, expansion of NEMSA facilities across the nation.

Others, he said were the completion and inauguration of a new National Meter Test  Station (NMTS) and the opening of a new Inspectorate Field Office (IFO) in Enugu.

“Construction of a new NMTS in Kano  and Benin city, establishment of new inspectorate field offices in Uyo, Akwa Ibom, Minna, Niger, Dutse, Jigawa,Oshodi Lagos,  Owerri, Imo and Bauchi.

“NEMSA had issued an enforcement notice to Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos), to disconnect from their networks all structures within the Right-of-Way(ROW) of transmission and distribution lines nationwide, ‘’ he said.

Tahir assured Nigerians of the agency’s determination to continue its statutory function of technical inspection, testing and certification of electrical materials in the NESI.

He, however, solicited the support of the media for effective coverage of NEMSA activities.


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Bagudu Demands Opportunities For Youths In Creative Industry

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The minister of budget and economic planning Abubakar Bagudu has called on the managing director/chief executives of the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC), Ali Nuhu to find meaningful opportunities for Youths to take advantage of the creative industry.

Bagudu also advised the corporation to seek collaboration with KOICA of South Korea, Japan and the French Embassy, to move the creative industry in the country forward.

The  minister called Dr Nuhu, a disruptor brought into government to use his creative ability to convey positive messages of Renewed Hope and project resilient Nigerians who daily toil to live meaningful lives.Stunned by thousands of storks flying over the sky in Gia Viễn dike, Ninh Bình – Nếm TV

Bagudu also advocated for support from international  organisations and relevant stakeholders  for the Nigerian Film Corporation to boost the economic growth of the country.

The minister made remarks when Dr Nuhu  and senior members of the corporation paid him a courtesy visit in the ministry on Thursday, according to a statement that was issued by the ministry spokeswoman Julie Osaige-Jacobs.

Abubakar Bagudu noted that President Bola Ahmed Tinubu was deliberate in the establishment of the Ministry of Culture and Creative Economy as he recognised the fact that some organisations or fields of endeavours contribute to economic growth of a nation.

According to the minister, ‘’ Our major asset rather than liability is the creative industry and remains the biggest employer of labour’’.

In response, the NFC boss said the purpose of the courtesy  increase in the budgetary allocation of the corporation, to enable it to achieve its mandates. He specifically noted that the increase in budgetary supplementation would enable the Corporation to maintain its liaison offices, the development of the NFC permanent site, capacity building of the existing staff and the recruitment of its aging personnel.

In a welcome address, the director/economic growth, Elizabeth Egharevba said “Our entertainment Industry is contributing to our economic  growth and with your appointment by the President, we are positive you will achieve more”.

The NFC is one of the parastatals in the Federal Ministry of Culture and Creative Economy and has the mandate to foster a thriving and enduring film industry and cinema culture, in Nigeria.


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Reps Panel Summons AGIP Over $80m Debt To Nigerian Contractor

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The House of Representatives Committee on Public Petition has summoned AGIP Oil Company to appear before it on June 26 over an alleged N80 million owed to an indigenous Nigerian contractor, De Cooon Services limited.

The Committee chaired by Hon. Michael Etaba from Cross River issued the summon at investigative hearing in Abuja on Thursday,

expressing displeasure over non-payment and the non-appearance of AGIP oil.Stunned by thousands of storks flying over the sky in Gia Viễn dike, Ninh Bình – Nếm TV

The Committee bemoaned the failure to pay an indigenous company for a job well done and patronising foreigners for the same job was unfortunate, adding that the act was capable of frustrating Nigerian contractors and driving the country out of business to  foreigners’ advantage.

Venting his anger, a member of the Committee, Hon. Matthew Nwogu, said the non-appearance of AGIP was disrespectful, stressing that it is unfortunate that people who are supposed to be accountable to Nigerians are not.

“When a committee like this is mandated by the constitution to handle issues concerning the lives of Nigerians, it summons an organisation, but the refusal should call for worry.

“I don’t know who is protecting who, but no one is above the law; the only people who have immunity are the governor and president,” he said.

Addressing the lawmakers, the managing director and chief executive officer of the company of

De Coon, Prof. Nelson Onubogu said the invitation was well advertised in the media, insisting that AGIP deliberately shunned the public hearing.

Onubogu said the matter started more than five years ago, adding that a situation where a Nigerian company is being strangled by an Italian firm was unfortunate.

“They owe my company over 80 million dollars paid by NNPCL. The NNPCL has paid the money, but it was diverted out of Nigeria. AGIP Oil Company used some cronies to take this money out of Nigeria, and they refused to pay the Nigerian company.

“AGIP took all my cancelled contracts and gave them to my own staff while they were working for me. All I am saying here is that AGIP should pay my money; AGIP should be mandated by the NNPCL to pay my money.

“I don’t believe in middle ground; the right thing should be done; they are owing me, and they should pay my money and restore all my contracts as awarded to me.

There are rules and regulations for terminating and awarding contracts,” he said.

Onubogu said he was ready for a peaceful resolution of the issue provided AGIP obeyed, adding that no one could tell him to forgo his money as justice must be done.

LEADERSHIP learnt that the Committee had earlier summoned the top Management of the Nigeria AGIP oil company over the petition raised by a service company, De Coon Services Limited.

Joined in the petition are Mele Kyari, Ali Zara, Ismailia Mohammed and Simbi Wabote.

According to the letter of Summons/Hearing notice issued 10th June, 2024 and signed by the Committee chairman, the parties involved were to appear before the committee on Thursday, June 20, 2024 with a soft copy and ten hard copies of their brief on the matter.

Part of the letter reads: “Whereas the above named petition is now pending before this Committee and the particulars aforesaid are hereby attached.

“And whereas the petition has been assigned to be heard by the Committee for determination, YOU ARE HEREBY requires to note Section 88 and 89(C) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and appear in person before this Committee on Thursday, 20th June, 2024 at 2.00 Pm or so soon thereafter as the Committee shall direct.”

Those specifically listed for response in the matter were the NAOC Managing Director, Division Manager (Strategic Procurement, one Engr. Dan Jumbo and 4 senior managers plus 2 retired staff of the company: Ronni’s Eronini and John Mpi, among others.

The letter further warned that any of the parties who fail to attend the hearing may bear the risk of having the matter determined in his/her absence.


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Fidelity Bank Assures N500bn Recapitalisation Target

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The managing director/CEO, Fidelity Bank Plc, Nneka Onyeali-Ikpe, has assured of the Bank meeting up its N500 billion recapitalisation exercise.

This is as the Bank yesterday, June 20, 2024 commenced its capital raising of N127.1 billion comprises of public offer of 10 billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each at N9.75 per share and rights issue of 3.200 billion ordinary shares of 50 kobo each at N9.25 per share.

Speaking at the Bank’s public offer and rights issue Facts Behind the Combined Offer event held yesterday in Lagos, Onyeali-Ikpe said the financial institution’s N127.10 billion capital raising exercise is to be considered as a pacesetter in the life of the banking industry capitalisation drive.Stunned by thousands of storks flying over the sky in Gia Viễn dike, Ninh Bình – Nếm TV

She stated that “our capital raising process was proactively initiated after obtaining approval from our shareholders in August 2023. This is part of our strategic growth plan to raise additional capital to meet our growth needs.”

According to her, the CBN recapitalisation directive presents a significant opportunity for a stronger and more resilient banks industry.

“We have embraced the challenge as a catalyst to propel us towards our long term vision of becoming a market leader across every product that we could offer and segments that we serve, not just in Nigeria, but as an international bank.”

She explained that “the proceeds from the offers will be instrumental in achieving our strategic growth plans.

“The funds will be deployed to drive our business and regional expansion. We will strategically expand our footprint within Nigeria to serve as a broader customer base and to unlock new market opportunities.”

She added that “we will invest In and upgrade existing information and technology infrastructure. The offer will support our customers and their businesses.”

She emphasised that the Management is optimistic the Bank will continue to record significant growth and improvement in its operations over the coming years.

She added that the Rights Issue will create a win-win for both the Bank, the investors, the shareholders and other stakeholders in translating this investment into significant economic benefits and enhanced shareholder value.

Also, the executive director, Fidelity Bank, Mr. Stanley Amuchie said “this is the first of course, and multistage approach that we tend to take, and not only to attain the N500 billion requirement, but our aspiration is actually to surpass it.”

He added that Fidelity Bank has grown exponentially in the last four years, which is based on strong fundamentals, strict corporate governance and on numbers that are sustainable.


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NASENI Underscores AMTDI’s Commitment To Advancing Technological Infrastructure

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The executive vice chairman/CEO of the National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASENI), Mr Khalil Suleiman Halilu has conducted an inspection visit to the Advanced Manufacturing Technology Development Institute (AMTDI), an institute under NASENI, in Jalingo, Taraba State.

The visit was to underscore NASENI’s commitment to advancing technological infrastructure and fostering innovation in Nigeria and to engage in interactions with the management team of the Institute, including identifying their operational challenges, potential areas for enhancement, and strategies to align their goals with NASENI’s mission of driving scientific and engineering infrastructures for the country.

AMTDI as an institute under NASENI is dedicated to the advancement of manufacturing technologies, including focus on research, development and dissemination of innovative solutions to drive industrial growth and development of Nigeria.Stunned by thousands of storks flying over the sky in Gia Viễn dike, Ninh Bình – Nếm TV

Halilu evaluated the equipment and also staff working conditions at AMTDI, emphasising the importance of a well-equipped and conducive working environment for research and development. His assessment also targeted identification of critical needs and opportunities for upgrading the institute’s facilities to ensure they meet global standards.

Speaking after the inspection, Halilu expressed his satisfaction with the commitment of AMTDI’s staff and their contributions to Nigeria’s technological advancements. He reiterated NASENI Management continued support in providing the necessary resources to enhance all institutes’ capabilities.

“The role of AMTDI in the technological landscape of Nigeria is pivotal,” said Halilu. “Our visit today reaffirms my commitment to supporting our development institutes that are at the forefront of driving innovation and development in advanced manufacturing technologies.

We are committed to addressing the challenges identified and providing the support needed to elevate AMTDI and others to new heights.”

The visit concluded with a tour of the institute’s facilities, where Halilu witnessed firsthand the ongoing projects and initiatives spearheaded by AMTDI. He commended the institute’s efforts in fostering a culture of innovation and also  assured of his continued support to achieve shared goals.

Speaking earlier while receiving the EVC at the institute, Engr. John Christopher Tanko, the Acting Managing Director of AMTDI, expressed his gratitude for the visit and highlighted the significance of the management’s support in achieving their mandate.

“We are honoured by the EVC/CEO’s visit and his keen interest in our work,” said Tanko adding that “this inspection tour reinforces our confidence in your transformational leadership and commitment to our growth and development. We are dedicated to leveraging the support provided to enhance our research, improve our facilities, and contribute meaningfully to Nigeria’s industrial advancement.”


FG Urges ARSO To Boost AfCFTA Implementation

The federal government has called on participants at the ongoing 30th African Organization for Standardization (ARSO) General Assembly being hosted by the Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) in Abuja, to harness the opportunity to generate greater political commitment and strategic partnerships. This is aimed at accelerating the effective implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and advancing the African Union’s 2024 Year of Education initiative, based on the Continental Education Strategy for Africa (CESA) 2016-2025.

Minister of Industry, Trade, and Investment, Dr Doris Uzoka-Anite, delivered this charge in her opening address at the event themed: “Educate an African Fit for the 21st Century – Building a Quality Culture – One Market, One Standard.”

The minister highlighted the importance of understanding standards and standards-related issues in policy-making, especially as the world moves towards artificial intelligence for faster development. She emphasised that robust synergy and collaboration among African nations and ARSO member states are crucial to implementing the AfCFTA Agreement, particularly in enhancing a Common Regulatory Framework.Enchanted by the Beautiful City near Cambodia Border – Nếm TV

Uzoka-Anite noted that the AfCFTA could stimulate intra-African trade by up to $35 billion per year, boost agricultural and industrial exports, and significantly increase GDP and consumer spending, potentially lifting millions out of poverty. However, she pointed out that intra-African trade has faced obstacles such as weak productive capacities, tariff-related trade costs, and high non-tariff trade costs.

“Distinguished delegates, it may also interest you to know that AfCFTA could stimulate intra-African trade by up to $35 billion per year, boost agriculture and industrial exports by up to $4 billion (7%) and USD 21 billion (5%) respectively and stimulate a GDP rise from $1.7 trillion (2010) to $2.6 trillion (2020) thereby pushing up consumer spending from $860 billion (2010) to $1.4 trillion (2020) and thus potentially lifting millions out of poverty (McKinsey),” she said.

The minister stressed the need to focus on Africa’s regional value chains and the competitiveness of Made-in-Africa products, aiming for export-oriented manufacturing, value addition, and quality infrastructure to boost intra-African trade and industrialisation.

She reaffirmed the ministry’s commitment to repositioning the Nigerian economy for sustainable growth, aligning with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda, and underscored the importance of standardisation in achieving this vision.

“To realise this vision, we must embrace standardisation as: “Standards set Good International Best Practices in every sector of Life,” which, if strictly adhered to, could promote productivity, trade and ensures predictability, transparency, openness, and as well as a basis for technical regulations,” she stated.

Director-general of the Standards Organisation of Nigeria (SON), Dr. Ifeanyi Okeke, echoed the minister’s sentiments, stating that the current Nigerian administration’s comprehensive educational roadmap focuses on increasing access to quality education, improving infrastructure, and investing in teachers.

He emphasised that standardisation fosters a quality culture that ensures products and services meet international benchmarks, enhances competitiveness, and facilitates trade.

Okeke urged the Assembly to re-commit to the CESA 2016-2025 strategy, addressing educational deficits with innovative approaches and available technologies. He highlighted the African Union’s declaration of 2024 as the “Year of Education,” calling on all governments to ensure inclusive, equitable, and quality education for all.

He described the Assembly as a call to action for policymakers, educators, industry leaders, and stakeholders to unite in fostering a resilient, inclusive, and quality-driven education system, ultimately nurturing a generation of Africans fit for the 21st century and beyond.


Tapswap Halts Token Allocation To Users Indefinitely

Tapswap, a widely used tap-to-earn program on the TON Blockchain, has indefinitely suspended its token distribution to users.

The decision, announced by John Robbin, Tapswap’s Head of Communications, in a space held on X on Wednesday, aims to find the best way to compensate users participating in the platform.

Launched on February 15, 2024, Tapswap has attracted over 50 million users globally, including many in Nigeria, who tap their phone screens to earn tokens through the Telegram Tapswap bot.

“The token launch was postponed until July 1. The new date will be communicated,” Robbin stated, underscoring the platform’s commitment to retaining its user base. “We will allocate a significant part of the tokens to the community to retain the tappers. We want you all to be part of the Tapswap community.”

Robbin emphasised the importance of a fair token airdrop, saying, “We need a token airdrop to be a win-win for all of us. We have started communicating with many exchanges and platforms.”

He also addressed concerns about system abuse, warning that, “Anybody abusing the system to farm taps and manipulate the game will be banned,” and asked genuine users to be patient while community members conduct background checks.”

On the mining process, Robbin explained, “Just open the app and tap on it; that will give you shares. The more you tap and the more upgrades you do, the more shares you will have when we finalize the tokens on it. The more tokens you want to have, the more tapping you have to do.”

The recently concluded booster option, which allowed users to boost their earnings, was also discussed. “We have grown exponentially faster than we thought, and to develop the game plan further, we introduced a paid feature to make their capital, but it was not mandated on the users,” Robbin noted.

The limited x2 donation feature, designed to help new users compete with earlier adopters, is now discontinued. “It was a platform that allowed people who joined recently to compete with people who started earlier. It is gone for now, but we are looking forward to using the money we earned from it to improve the game in the future,” he added.

Robbin assured users of the app’s longevity, stating, “It is all going to our 25 staffers working around the clock to sustain the app. We want to be here for a very long time.”