The People’s Democratic Party, PDP, says Mr. Godwin Emefiele cannot continue to stay in office as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) because of his involvement in politics, and demanded his arrest, prosecution for alleged abuse of office and financial impropriety.
The call was made in a press conference in Abuja on Friday, PDP National Publicity Secretary, Hon. Debo Ologunagba recalled that the PDP had previously alerted the nation that Emefiele was being promoted by the Presidency as the Presidential candidate of the All-Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 general elections.
He said the PDP had maintained that by getting involved in politics, the CBN chief had gone against the provisions of the CBN Act 2007 particularly 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…”
This provision is clear in its demand that 100 percent of the time and expertise of the CBN Governor and deputy governors shall be dedicated to the service of the CBN, he stated and reaffirmed CBN is critical to the integrity and stability of Nigeria’s economy.
He also cited Section 030422 of the Public Service Rule that prevents public officers from holding elective office unless such officer resigns his appointment and particularly Section 030502 (g) of the Rule which lists “engaging in partisan political activities as a serious act of misconduct, the PDP spokesman averred that 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.
“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.
“By this 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 billions 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.
“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, he added.”
The PDP points to reports in the public space of how Emefiele’s agents “through corrupt practices, including manipulation of the exchange rate, allegedly amassed sum close to $1 billion dollars 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 an atrocious regime in the CBN where our economy is opened to fraudulent pillaging to promote a political ambition.
“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.
“As Nigerians, we are determined to confront this evil. We wish Mr. Emefiele well in his newfound but ill-fated political vocation but we demand that he must be brought to account for the activities that he undertook, supervised, and superintended over the years that he has been at the helm of affairs at the CBN and for which our economy is in comatose.:
The PDP called on all Nigerians; the Civil Society, Students, Organized Labour, the Media, and all lovers of good governance to rise up as the PDP takes drastic actions in leading the charge to defend the integrity of the CBN, Rule of Law and ensure that those who brought our economy to its knees face the wrath of the law, he added.”