P e o p l e s D e m o c r a t i c Party (PDP) has alleged that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) under Dr. Godwin Emefiele as governor is being run as finance department of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
The party also accused the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari of impunity and lawlessness in condoling illegality of watching as highly placed public servants such as Emefiele allegedly dabble into partisan politics. The party queried the legality of the CBN Governor’s continued stay in office while he has been linked with interest in contesting the 2023 presidency on the platform of the APC.
The PDP “wondered what Emefiele could still be doing in office after obvious and undeniable political hobnobbing.”
A group of rice farmers in the country was said to have bought a N100 million APC presidential nomination form for Emefiele on Friday, which the PDP described as absurdity and evidence of recklessness, impunity and lack of respect for the rule of law being exhibited by the Buhari administration.
Addressing a press conference on Saturday at the party secretariat in Abuja, National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Debo Ologunagba said Emefiele does not deserve an extra stay in office as CBN Governor but to be arrested and prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and other anti corruption agencies.
The party said by linking him to partisanship, “ Mr. Emefiele has become a clear and present danger to the health, integrity and reputation of the CBN and our nation’s financial sector.
His continued stay as CBN Governor will further destroy investors’ confidence in the integrity of our nation’s financial regulatory Institution. “Mr. Emefiele’s involvement in partisan politics while still holding office as CBN Governor underpins the impunity, lawlessness and recklessness of the Muhammadu Buhari-led APC administration.
It further confirms that the CBN under Emefiele has all along been the finance department of the APC. “It is now evident that the summersault of the economy under Mr. Emefiele as CBN Governor has been influenced by a personal partisan interest for which the CBN under his watch allegedly allowed multiple leakages in our financial regulations through discriminatory exchange rate policies and nebulous subsidies to funnel billons of naira to political lackies to fund a presidential ambition.
“This also explains why under Emefiele, the CBN which is supposed to be the bankers’ bank continues to engage in fraudulent retail banking services under ill-defined economic intervention programmes to plunder the treasury.
“The tsunamic macroeconomic and fiscal policies of the CBN under Emefiele brought untold hardship to the productive and service sectors of our nation’s economy with consequential negative effect on the lives of our citizens.
“It is provocative that instead of being remorseful, Mr. Emefiele is even insulting the sensibilities of Nigerians by seeking the office of the President while still holding office as CBN Governor.
“The PDP points to reports in the public space of how Emefiele’s agents through corrupt practices, including manipulation of exchange rate, allegedly amassed sum close to $1 billion dollar which is already being deployed by the purchase of hundreds of Emefiele branded campaign vehicles in the colours of the APC in furtherance of a lavish Presidential campaign.
“The direct consequences of such atrocious regime in the CBN under Emefiele is the collapse of our naira from N197 to N600 to a dollar, the crippling of our productive sector, multiple economic recession, increased poverty, inflation and unemployment rates, high costs of living and excruciating hardship to our citizens.
“It is indeed saddening that President Muhammadu Buhari, who promised zero tolerance for corruption will enable, encourage and condone such atrocious regime in the CBN where our economy is opened to fraudulent pillaging to promote a political ambition.”
Pointing out what it terms illegality in Emefiele’s actions, the party drew the attention of Nigerians to the provisions of the CBN Act 2007 and particularly referenced Section 9 which provides that “the Governor and the Deputy Governors shall devote the whole of their time to the service of the bank and while holding office, shall not engage in any full or part-time employment or vocation, whether remunerated or not…” Continuing, the PDP pointed out that “this provision is clear in demanding that 100 percent of the time and expertise of the CBN Governor and Deputy Governors shall be dedicated to the service of the CBN.
This is because the CBN is critical to the integrity and stability of our economy. “Furthermore, Section 030422 of the Public Service Rule states that no public officer shall (a) “hold any office, paid or unpaid, permanent or temporary, in any political organization”, (b) offer himself/herself or nominate anyone else as a candidate for any elective public office…”, (c) “indicate publicly his support of or opposition to any party, candidate or policy and (d) “engage in canvassing in support of political candidates” unless such officer resigns his appointment.
“Importantly, Section 030502 (g) of the Rule lists “engaging in partisan political activities’ as Serious Act of Misconduct. “Emefiele’s involvement in politics without resigning as CBN Governor therefore amounts to gross misconduct in contravention of Section 11 2 (2)(c) of the CBN Act.”
It said, “now that Mr. Emefiele has joined politics and reportedly obtained the N100 million Presidential aspirant form from the APC, he cannot continue to resume at the CBN which is the commonwealth of our nation.
“Our Party stands with Nigerians in demanding the immediate arrest, investigation and prosecution of Mr. Emefiele by security and anti-graft agencies, particularly the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged financial malfeasance and abuse of office in the CBN under his watch.”
The PDP charged Nigerians; the civil society, students, organized labour, the media and all lovers of good governance to rise up as the party takes drastic actions in leading the charge to defend the integrity of the CBN, rule of law and ensure that those who brought Nigeria’s economy to its knees face the wrath of the law. However, Emefiele expressed gratitude to those that purchased the APC Presidential nomination forms for him, saying if he decides to contest, he would use his personal resources.
In a series of tweets on Saturday, he said he is yet to make up his mind on 2023 Presidency. In the tweet, he said “I I am humbled by the growing interest of those asking that I run for the Office of President in the 2023 general elections: I have not come to that decision. I note and salute the sacrifices of those farmers and patriots going as far as raising personal funds and offering me Presidential Nomination Forms: I thank them most profusely.
“However, Should I answer their calls and decide to seek presidential nomination, I will use my own hard-earned savings from over 35 years of banking leadership to buy my own Nomination Forms, without proxies in an open and transparent manner in full compliance with the laws and Constitution of The Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“And should I not run for elected office, I will continue to serve and sacrifice for the good people of Nigeria under the able leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari. This is a serious decision that requires God’s Divine intervention: in the next few days The Almighty will so direct.”