By Brendan Umoren
The purported leakage of an audio of the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Dr Godwin Emefiele, discussing an alleged missing N500bn has been condemned by the Coalition of Civil Society Groups (CCSG), as an act done in bad faith and an attempt to blackmail the CBN governor.
The group, an umbrella body of civil society groups in Nigeria, said it was clearly the handiwork of those against the reappointment of Dr. Emefiele.
They said the sudden emergence of an audio tape on purported misappropriation of fund after Emefiele’s appointment into a second term in office was simply suspicious and an attempt to create an unnecessary confusion in the nation’s financial sector as well discredit the nation’s Apex bank governor.
At a press conference addressed in Abuja by the National President and Secretary General of CCSG, Etuk Bassey William and Alhaji Ibrahim Abubakar respectively, the group warned Nigerians of the negative effect such accusations could cause the nation’s economy.
They noted that there should be limits to vendettas as the audio was done in bad taste, more so as the nation had benefitted immensely from the expertise brought into the management of the nation’s economy, just as was the heroic job done by Dr. Emefiele in pulling the nation out of the last economic recession.
Querying the timing of the release of the audio tape, the CCSG wondered the logic and undercurrents behind the tape’s release especially after Emefiele’s appointment by President Muhammadu Buhari for a fresh term in office.
“There has been several policy and economic initiatives that has been introduced by Emefiele since his assumption into office and they are quite numerous.
“It is baffling that during these periods of struggles not for a day did the nation gets the contributions of these detractors even if they had contrary opinions, ideas or policies.
“To suddenly jump into the fray and cause this distraction upon the reappointment of the CBN governor is not only antithetical to the growth of our economy but indeed to the spirit of collectivism needed to build the nation” , Comrade William stated.
He said Nigerians must learn to appreciate good efforts of individuals like the governor, saying this pull-him-down syndrome that had become the bane of good work must be jettisoned if the country is to move forward even as President Buhari had silenced those against the tenure extension of Emefiele which can be attributed to the CBN governor’s obvious strides which was now evident in growth and diversification of Nigeria’s economy.
“We have listened to the audio and can actually state that the conversation had no connotation of any fraudulent intent as being purported.
“Nigerians and all investors should disregard the antics of these enemies of progress who always believe that they must destroy or discredit credible activities of government once things don’t go their ways.
“But we want to assure the management of CBN that Nigerians are behind them, and should not be distracted by self-seeking detractors”, the group stated.