CBN: Embattled Emefiele, Returns To Nigeria Amidst Tight Security

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By Suleiman Umaru

After sever several weeks of behind the scene maneuvering, Godwin Emefiele, the Delta  state born  governor  of Central Bank of Nigerian, CBN, who was in President Muhammadu’s entourage  to the North Amercan country of the United States, US,  African Leaders’ Summit in Washington DC, the country’s Capital,  between December 13 and 15, 2022 had delayed his return to Nigeria.

He may have delayed his return to the country to escape arrest and detention by Yusuf Magaji Bichi, led Department of State Security to arrest him over allegations of terrorism Financing and Corruption. An online Publication, not The Value News, had reported that the embattled CBN,governor  has serious stakes  in 12 banks , both within and outside the country. The Publicaton had named Tita, Globus, Providence and Union Bank. He was said to have big interest in First Bank Nigeria, plc, and other undisclosed Banks.

Emefiele: CBN , GOV. Resumes Work

There areindications that the duo  Mamman Daura, a Nephew of the Katsina state born Nigerian President and Nasir El-Rufai, a former minister of Federal Capital Territory, FCT, during Former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s Administration, and now governor of Kaduna state whom he was said to have helped to secure a $350 million World Bank loan  had  used their close relationship with the Nigerian President  to forestall the secret service from arresting the apex bank governor. They had their way.

Emefiele , may have known that if he fails to resume work on Tuesday, January 17, 2023,  he may lose his exalted position  to either Hajia Aishah Ahmad, Board member  and Deputy governor,  Financial System Stabibility  or Edward Admu, overseeing Corporate Services Directorate.

It was not surprising that when he got the signal that coast is clear to return to the country that he returned on Monday, January 16, 2023. An insider said that he had headed straight from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, the federal Capital Territory, FCT, to his office amidst tight military protection to avoid harassment by DSS personnel who were said to have been stationed at strategic locations to know when he will sneak into the country and re-direct his movement to the service office to answer to the allegations of terrorism financing and corruption against.

 Osita  Nwanisobi,  the apex Bank Director of Communications had said that the CBN , Chief Executive Officer, CEO, who had resumed work on Monday, January 16, 2023, was greeted with a rousing welcome by the Management and Staff of the Bank. A source disclosed that he was very happy that the apex Bank Governors and Executive Board members were able to vacuum in his absence that no job was left on one.

Nwanisobi, the apex bank spokesperson, had said that Emefiele had resumed  duty with renewed vigour  ‘’to perform his  duty ahead  of the first Monetary  Policy Committee, MPC,  meeting   of the year,  scheduled for January 23 and 24, 2023’’.

The CBN, governor was said to have told those that cares to listen   that he remains ‘’committed to performing the task before him  in line with  the oath of office  and policy direction  of the Nigerian President’’. 

Many believe that he may have intervened to forestall the secret service from arresting the CBN governor to avoid exposing Nigeria to ridicule by the International Community and the creditor nations including the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, IMF and other Multilateral Financial Institutions whih may not want to listen to Buhari’s debt cancellation pea for developing countries including  Nigeria.   Recall that last September,  the Nigerian President who could not hide his feelings at the United Nations  General Asemblt meeting in NewYork, US,   had called for debt cancellation  for developing countries , in cluding  his home country Nigeria,  noting that  the debt  burden poses   ‘’severe  challenges  to the affected nations’’.   He may not have wanted to give room to the Multi-lateral financial Institutions  to make mockery of Nigeria that he may have ordered Bichi a, the DSS, Director General and his men to match the break and allow Emefiele, the CBN, governor to return to his desk  and continue his job without further harassment.

Bichi: DG, DSS

Tis may have informed why DSS personnel could not invade the CBN premises to arrest the CBN governor on his duty post on Monday, January 16, 2023, or lay ambush in his house to pick him.  Peter Afunanya, the DS, spokesperson was emphatic on this:  the DSS operatives did not invade the CBN, premises , to arrest Emefiefe as alleged’’.

Until he abandoned his duty post last December to escape  security agencies  arrest, the secret service had approached an a Federal High Court in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory , FCT, seek orders to arrest  and detain him. They got it wrong.   The trial Judge, Justice Maryan Hassan had quashed the moves by the service. The Judge had barred   the DSS under the Leadership of Bichi,  from ‘’arresting,  or detain Emefiele , declaring the terrorism financing allegations  against  him by the service  as vindictive,  callous, oppressive , void and of no effect’’.

Femi Falan, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, had said that the DSS, did not need a Court order to arrest Emefifele, the CBN, governor, because he is not one of those constitutionally entitled to enjoy immunity.

Security analysts noted that the Scret service may have  allowed him  to resume work to avoid heating up the polity and to think that all is well but may still come for him  at the appropriate time. This is an indications that trouble is not yet over for the CBN governor.          

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