The governor of Ondo State, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu, has asked the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele to resign his position following his intent to contest the 2023 presidential election.
Recall that Emefiele yesterday picked the All Progressives Congress (APC) N100 million presidential nomination and expression of interest form at the International Conference Center, Abuja to run for the office of the president in 2023.
The development has stirred reactions with many Nigerians including the former minister of education, Mrs. Oby Ezekwesili calling for his resignation as governor of the apex bank.
Akeredolu, in a statement he signed personally described Emefiele’s move as “a joke taken too far”, and asked President Muhammadu Buhari to sack the CBN governor should he refuse to resign voluntarily.
He said Emefiele cannot participate actively in partisan politics and also hold the position of CBN governor.
“Consequently, we admonish Mr. Emefiele to leave the office, immediately, for him to pursue his interest.
“He cannot combine partisan politics with the very delicate assignment of his office. Should he refuse to quit, it becomes incumbent on the president and commander-in-chief of the armed forces to remove him forthwith.
“Rumours had been rife on the subterranean partisan activities linked to him through these shadowy characters in the recent weeks.
“Pictures of branded vehicles, ostensibly purchased for electioneering campaigns, were also posted on social media. The audacious moves by those who claimed to be supporting this interest have been unsettling.
“This latest news confirms that the Governor may indeed be interested in immersing himself in the murky waters of politics like any other Nigerian with partisan interests.
“It is incontrovertible that Mr. Emefiele enjoys a constitutionally protected right to belong to any group or association and participate fully, just as any Nigerian.
“It is, however, difficult to imagine that a person who occupies the exalted and sensitive office of the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria will be this brazen in actualising his ambition.
“There is no gain asserting the obvious. The combined effect of the Public Service Rules, CBN Act and the 1999 Constitution, as amended, exposes not only the oddity inherent in this brash exercise of presumed right to associate.
“It also confirms the illegality of the act should he proceed to submit the forms while occupying the seat as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria,” Akeredolu said.
Similarly, Ezekwesili, asked Emefiele to resign from his position and pursue his “ill-fated political career.”
In a series of tweet, Ezekwesili said: “The Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria @cenbank must now immediately tender his resignation to stop further destroying whatever little remains of the country’s monetary policy reputation. Mr. Emefiele should leave immediately- tonight- to pursue his ill-fated political career.”
She also alleged that the CBN governor handed over the apex bank’s control to the Buhari since the latter assumed office.
More so, she said the “ill-advised monetary policies” of the bank in the last seven years have been “political”.
Furthermore, she alleged that the hidden politics behind the wrong monetary policies and alleged control of the CBN by Buhari led to Emefiele’s open partisan politics.
“If you did not know all along that Nigeria’s serial wrong and ill-advised Monetary Policies of the last 7 years were political because the @cenbank long handed its independence to the Villa @NGRPresident @MBuhari , at least now you know. They’ve outed themselves. Finally,” she wrote.
Also reacting, a lawyer, Mr. Festus Ogun, urged Buhari to urgently fire Emefiele saying the treasury of Nigeria was no longer safe under the superintendence of the governor
“CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, has picked the APC N100 million presidential nomination and expression of interest form. Clearly, this is illegal, morally reprehensible and weakens whatever is left of our institutions.
“Section 9 of the CBN Act, 2007 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’.
“Politics is a vocation and the CBN Governor is not allowed by law to engage in partisan politics. It is unthinkable that Emefiele, despite his embarrassing failures, will disregard law and morality to vie for President under the ruling APC. Our national vault is no longer safe.
“Mr. Godwin Emefiele must immediately resign his position as CBN Governor to save our country from this unthinkable absurdity. The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) must immediately commence thorough investigation into Emefiele’s period in office.
“Finally, I call on President Muhammadu Buhari to invoke his statutory powers under Section 11(2) of the CBN Act to sack Emefiele. The National Assembly and civil society organizations are equally enjoined to intervene in this peculiar institutional desecration. All is not well,” Ogun said.
In the same vein, many Nigerians took to the social media to express their reservations.
@TheoAbuAgada “ Nigeria is gone. Imagine the man in charge of Nigeria’s monetary policy is an active politician. Lmao. Can’t make this up. Emefiele must resign now.”
@Editieffiong “ IG of Police or Chief of Army Staff could decide to run for president while actively commanding thousands of armed personnel, and nothing would happen. This is the precedent being set by Emefiele.”
@GraceJohn “Nigeria law is useless, what is CBN doing with APC party still in office? He should resign immediately. What kind of rubbish is this?
@Slyore “I never thought this day will come, where a sitting CBN governor would be audaciously involved in politics. The bar has finally dropped. Sad indeed.”
@AniediUdofia “We live in a crazy country. President sef wants to be party chairman
@Chiukwujioke “Nigeria is a Joke if a CBN Governor can pull out 100m while still in office, then we are in trouble.”