Emefiele’s suspension long foretold, but announcement unexpected – expert

By Kadiri Abdulrahman

A financial expert, Prof. Uche Uwaleke, says the suspension of the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr Godwin Emefiele was long foretold.

Uwaleke, a Professor of Finance and Capital Market at the Nasarawa State University, Keffi, said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday in Abuja.

He, however, said that the announcement on Friday caught many Nigerians by surprise.

According to him, the President can not sack the CBN Governor, but he can suspend, which is what the he has done.

“Recall that Mr Sanusi Lamido Sanusi was equally suspended from office by the Jonathan administration.

“This suspension will mark an end to a turbulent era,” he said.

He said that Emefiele would be remembered for implementing big ideas such as the Anchor Borrower Programme, the RT200, the eNaira and a raft of interventions which helped to stimulate the economy during periods of economic recession.

“To be fair, Emefiele, to a large extent, succeeded in ensuring financial sector stability, going by the prudential ratios.

“His forex demand management policies, especially the 41 items not qualified for forex, promoted import substitution, conserved external reserves and ensured relative stability in exchange rates.

“It would be unfair to blame him for the current high inflation rate since most of the causative factors are beyond the control of the CBN,” Uwaleke said.

He said that on the flip side, Emefiele would also be remembered for the currency redesign exercise which did not go down well with Nigerians.

He added that the CBN Ways and Means, which grew astronomically during his tenure also casted a dark spot on his legacy.

“His greatest mis-step was his attempt to join the list of presidential candidates.

“All said, I think Emefiele deserves some rest now,” he said.

NAN reports that President Bola Tinubu suspended Emefiele from office with immediate effect on Friday.

This was contained in a statement by Willie Bassey
Director, Information
Office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.

According to Bassey, the suspension is sequel to the ongoing investigation of Emefiele’s office and the planned reforms in the financial sector of the economy.

He said that Emefiele had been directed to immediately hand over the affairs of his office to the Deputy Governor (Operations Directorate), Mr Folashodun Shonubi,

Shonubi will act as the CBN Governor, pending the conclusion of investigation and the reforms.(NAN)