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PDP, CNPP disagree on Emefiele as Udoedehe denies indicting CBN governor

By Azimazi Momoh Jimoh and Adamu Abuh, Abuja
24 September 2021   |   3:16 am
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), yesterday, called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, to resign over a corruption allegation levelled against him.

APC’s caretaker secretary, John Akpanudoedehe

• We won’t accept free fall of naira, says PGF
• Group backs apex bank chief

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), yesterday, called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, to resign over a corruption allegation levelled against him.

The opposition party anchored its position on an alleged indictment by National Secretary, Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator John Udoedehe.

But in a telephone interview with The Guardian, Udoedehe denied indicting the apex bank chief.

“It is completely untrue that I accused the CBN Governor of any corrupt practice. The PDP should look for something else to say. I never indicted the CBN Governor. This tells you about the poor quality of opposition PDP offers,” he said.

MEANWHILE, the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP), yesterday, opposed the PDP’s resignation call. Reacting in Abuja through its Secretary General, Chief Willie Ezeugwu, the group insisted that Emefiele had not done any wrong to warrant his removal from office, adding that the PDP does not enjoy the support of other opposition political parties as far as this advocacy was concerned.

The CNPP noted that what should worry the PDP “is resignation of its leading members.” Ezeugwu, in a statement, stated that the Nigerian opposition parties were supposed to be undergoing internal healing and rebuilding for better standing in 2023. 

Addressing a press conference in Abuja, PDP’s National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, said: “Our party calls on the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to immediately invite Emefiele for questioning over allegations by the National Secretary of the illegal APC National Caretaker Committee that the CBN Governor supervised the pillaging of the nation’s vaults under his watch.”

He added: “Nigerians were shocked when Senator Akpan Udoedehe, on Channels TV’s ‘Politics Today’ of Wednesday, September 15, 2021, said the CBN Governor supervised the stealing of money in the apex bank, a development for which he must be investigated by the EFCC, and if found wanting, prosecuted.”

Ologbondiyan said the opposition had waited for a week for Udoedehe to retract his statement or for Emefiele to repudiate him.

He insisted that beyond Udoedehe’s allegation, “the tenure of Emefiele, as CBN Governor, under the APC administration has witnessed colossal failure of monetary and fiscal policies, which requires him to vacate the office and hand himself over for investigation.”

According to the PDP spokesman, “it is instructive to note that when Emefiele took over office as CBN Governor in 2014, the naira exchanged for N164 to a dollar. Today, in the hands of Emefiele and the APC, the naira has tumbled to near N600 to a dollar, bringing the nation’s economy to its knees.”

IN the interim, Director General of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF), Dr. Salihu Lukman, has decried the free fall of the naira against other currencies at the parallel market.

The PGF boss, in a piece titled, ‘Nigeria’s Debt and Struggle for New Nigeria’, urged the CBN to take urgent steps to stabilise the currency.

WHILE arguing in defence of Emefiele yesterday, the North-South Economists’ Forum (NSEF), a group of development economists, exonerated the apex bank chief from the continued depreciation of the naira.

In a statement issued by its Chairman and Secretary, Mallam Ahmed Abdulkadir and Dr. Chima Eboh, the group linked the fate of the legal tender to low receipts from crude oil sales and non-export status of the Nigerian economy.