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Sunday, December 10, 2023

On Emefiele’s Naira Bedlam and how he will be remembered

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Godwin Emefiele is on his way to becoming the most infamous Central Bank governor in the history of Nigeria. His naira swap policy is reported to be causing anguish, hardship, civil unrest, and death. Even if he eventually puts things right, posterity will have him as one whose policy led to blood and grief.

This is the first time in the history of Nigeria that people have money in their respective bank accounts but cannot access it as the cash in circulation cannot service the over 200 million Nigerians. The tragedy here is that Emefiele himself admitted his policy is ineffectual when he said there was not enough paper to print the new naira.

In other words, he has told Nigerians that there were zero scenarios planning before embarking on a project that would impact the lives of Nigerians either for good or for bad. Incidentally, the impact of the policy is of earthshaking proportions. Point of Sales Service (POS) providers, a veritable source of cash in Nigeria do not have cash; banks’ ATMs are not dispensing cash and neither are the banks giving cash over the counter. The result is nothing short of Bedlam.

As we put together this article, Okada riders are protesting in Ondo while banks remain closed. In Delta, banks and filing stations are being torched; thousands of protesters were teargassed in Uyo by police.

There is more; Fish sellers took to the streets in Ibadan on the same day that three people died while protesting the police in Edo State. It was also reported that travellers were stranded at the Lagos Ibadan Expressway due to protesters’ activity.

The country-wide angst against Emefiele’s unbridled act leaves only one conclusion- it is an anti-people policy. Governments exist to serve the people and not the other way around. So Emefiele’s pigheadedness in this situation (aided by Mr. President) suggests that he has a personal agenda or he is working with a Cabal to enforce an agenda.

This is even more so as the Courts, the arm of government that ensures justice and fairness, has intervened in the matter. This is indicative that Emefiele’s insistence on his three months and ten days deadline is nothing short of draconian and self-serving.

It was reported that governors whose people are at the receiving end of the boomerang policy have tried to intervene but have met a Pharaoh in Emefiele and Mr. President.

Led by Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai, the governors had approached the orchestrators of the policy to tarry with the implementation of the policy to provide respite for the people but met a wall bigger, and stronger than that of Jericho’s.

Indeed, yesterday’s revelation by Nasir El-Rufai that the naira redesign is a grand plot to scuttle the elections is becoming believable given the emerging scenarios.

El-Rufai revealed that elements who lost the presidential primaries of the All Progressives Congress and also did not get picked as running mate of Ahmed Bola Tinubu have ganged up to unleash mayhem on the people with the grand design of scuttling the forthcoming elections and installing an interim government to be led by a retired General.

If indeed, as speculated in some quarters, and as alleged by Governor El-Rufai, this whole saga leads to nationwide unrest, disruption of the forthcoming elections, and a change of government not willed by the people, it will then be clear to all who the point man is for DESTROYING Nigeria – Godwin Emefiele.

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