A pro-development group, Esan Agenda, has called on the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed and the Presidency to apologise to the Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, for disparaging him when he revealed that the apex bank was printing money indiscriminately to shore up government’s dwindling revenue.
Convener of the group, Mr. Akhere Obozele, in a statement, said the call became necessary in the light of the drop in foreign exchange of the Naira to the Dollar, which now stands at N710/$1 as at July 27, 2022; the depletion of the country’s Excess Crude Account (ECA), and the worrisome debt servicing situation.
Obaseki had in April 2021 raised the alarm that the CBN printed N60bn to share to states and local governments in the wake of shortfall in government revenues occasioned by the drop in oil prices and failure of the government’s economic fiscal policies.
According to him, “It is now clear to the world that Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki was right after all when, in 2021, he raised the alarm about the arbitrary and unsustainable resort to printing money and sharing to states when the government ought to have taken drastic and foundational measures to fix the countries fiscal woes.
“With the unchecked drop in the value of the naira, Governor Obaseki is vindicated. The governor said the Minister of Finance and the CBN governor were playing the ostrich when they ought to buckle up and fix Nigeria’s disarticulate economy.”
The group noted that it was necessary to remind Nigerians that the governor predicted that $1 will exchange for N1000 if those manning the economy didn’t get their acts right, a reality that is now staring Nigerians in the face.
“The governor is an economist, who understands economic fundamentals. That Governor Obaseki raised the alarm then was because he was a patriot and knew that drastic measures had to be taken. Instead of taking his advice, elements within the Federal Government launched attacks against him and embarked on media rounds to disparage the governor’s patriotic comments.