Economic Saboteurs and smugglers have intensified campaigns to stall the confirmation of Godwin Emefiele as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria for another five years by the Senate, a report has said.
Emefiele was renominated by President Muhammadu Buhari last week as the CBN Governor for another five years term.
But the President’s move may not have pleased vested interests as they have begun smear campaigns against the conformation of the apex bank governor, a report said on Monday.
According to the report, investigations revealed that smugglers and importers, especially those fighting the importation of the 43 banned items by the CBN, have intensified their campaign against the confirmation of Emefiele.
The report said investigations revealed that the renomination of Emefiele may have come as a surprise to most importers, particularly those involved in the importation of the 43 banned items, tagged: “Not eligible for foreign exchange via the official window.”
It was gathered that those caught in the web may have taken the gauntlet to take the fight to the door steps of the apex bank by deploying all ammunition in their arsenal to fight against the confirmation by the National Assembly.
Checks have revealed that those in the illegal rice and textile businesses importation have been unhappy and having sleepless nights over the nationalistic nature of Emefiele.
Investigations have shown that the disgruntled elements are now mobilizing through various means to discredit Emefiele.
A top Presidency source said “not stopping at that, they have resorted to either to use the courts to scuttle the confirmation process or other means like sponsoring protests, concoction of spurious messages, smeared media campaigns and to hacking into official conversations as means of discrediting the CBN governor”.
The source said: “They are stopping at nothing to ensure that the Senate does not confirm Mr. Emefiele because he has said that it will no longer be business as usual but the good thing is that President Muhammadu Buhari believes so much in the CBN governor.
“The strong economic polices introduced by Mr. Emefiele, especially the foreign exchange regime management, as well as the policy that took Nigeria out of recession has pleased the President.
“Mr. Emefiele has done well and deserved the commendation of Nigerians.
“As resolute as ever, Emefiele has remained undaunted as he vowed to fight smugglers using the powers enshrined in CBN Act 2007 and BOFIA to regulate the financial system and the economy at large toward higher productivity, employment generation, wealth creation and self reliance in the nearest future.”
Speaking recently in Katsina during the launch of input distribution to cotton farmers for 2019 farming season, driven by passion for economic rejuvenation, Emefiele reiterated that saboteurs would be blacklisted from assessing financial services from banks operating in the country.
The report revealed that conservative elements in President Buhari’s government, who wanted the naira floated at the behest of the nation’s economic crisis against the advice of the CBN Governor, are seeking revenge by having Emiefele removed despite “his dogged economic policies, which helped the government steer the nation out of economic crisis”.
A top financial expert said: “Imagine if President Buhari had listened to those calling for the floating of the naira, where do you think we would be now?
“The naira would have been exchanging for N1,000 or more to the dollar and the Nigeria financial system would have collapsed.”
The source argued further that the purchasing powers of the ordinary Nigerian would have been completely eroded and “what you hear in Venezuela and Zimbabwe would have been a child’s play”.
“So how do you want to change such a man who was able to navigate our delicate economy? Except for ulterior motives,” the source said, adding that the successes recorded in the Anchor Borrowers Programme wouldn’t have been possible.
Arguing further, the expert said: “Today Nigeria is importing less than 20 per cent of rice compared to about 80 per cent in the past treats.
“All thanks to the CBN programme, which focuses on agricultural produces.
“The CBN Governor is doing well for Nigeria and such a man should be commended for a job well done rather than some people going about discrediting him because they want to deny him a second term as Governor of the CBN.”