Saying he performed creditably in his first term, the Senate Thursday confirmed the reappointment of Mr. Godwin Emefiele as governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for a second and final term of five years.
Emefiele’s confirmation was sequel to the presentation of the report of the Senator Adebayo Ibrahim-led Senate Committee on Banks, Insurance and other Financial Institutions that screened him on Wednesday.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on May 8 submitted the name of Emefiele to the Senate for the renewal of his second and last five-year tenure as CBN governor.
The Senate at plenary on Tuesday referred the president’s letter to the banking committee for further legislative action.
The committee thereafter screened Emefiele on Wednesday and recommended him for re-appointment as CBN governor.
Presenting the committee’s report yesterday, Ibrahim said the committee took its time to screen the nominee.
According to him, “The nominee made his presentation, which covered his experience in banking even before becoming the governor of the central bank.
“On assumption of office as the governor of the central bank, he brought a number of initiatives which positively impacted on the Nigerian economy and boosted revenue generation through promotion and ensuring the adherence to accessibility and transparency of government finances.”
He said in his first tenure as CBN governor, Emefiele was able to liquidate ailing financial institutions, bridging not too sound financial institutions and maintained stable interest rate and effective management of the nation’s foreign exchange regime.
Ibrahim added that Emefiele also initiated several policies and programmes, which have positive effect on the economy.
“After scrutinizing him, at the end of the screening exercise the committee findings are as follows; that the nominee has more than 32 years of banking experience, that the nominee understands the diverse nature of the economy and has displayed profound knowledge of the continuous existence of the economy’s stability.
“That he has performed creditably well in his first tenure which resulted to the exit of the nation out of recession. Going by the nominee’s character, banking experience, vast economic knowledge and performance in his first tenure, he is qualified for the position of the Governor of the Central Bank for another tenure for which he has been nominated by the president.”
The Committee Chairman thereafter moved a motion to the effect that “based on the foregoing, the committee recommends that the Senate should approve the renewal of the appointment of Mr. Godwin Emefiele as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
The motion was seconded by Senator Chukwuka Utazi who described the report of the committee as well researched and well written.
Speaking during the confirmation, the Senate President, Dr. Bukola Saraki, charged him to use his re-appointment for another five years to help improve the nation’s economy.
He advised the CBN boss to deploy his wealth of financial experience towards the economic revitalisation of Nigeria.
Saraki also admonished him to use the renewal of his appointment as an opportunity to continue to provide support and ensure the economy of the country is improved upon to address the most important areas of ensuring micro economic policies.
Saraki thereafter congratulated Emefiele on his re-appointment, saying: “On behalf of the Senate let me congratulate the Governor of the CBN on the renewal of his appointment for another term of five years.”
Emefiele Challenges Suit Seeking to Stop Senate’s Confirmation
Despite his clearance by the Senate, Emefiele has challenged the suit seeking to stop the confirmation of his re-appointment by the lawmakers.
The suit, which was initiated by Mr. George Uboh under the auspices of the Incorporated Trustees of George Uboh Whistleblowers Network, is praying the Federal High Court in Abuja to stop the Senate from taking any step to screen and confirm the re-appointment as CBN governor pending the hearing and determination of a separate suit.
In reaction to the suit, Emefiele through his lawyers, Prof. Konyinsola Ajayi (SAN); Mr. Damian Dodo (SAN); and Prof. Fabian Ajogwu (SAN), filed court processes challenging the suit.
In the court papers obtained by THISDAY, Emefiele dismissed all the allegations made by Uboh and his association as utter falsehood, frivolous, baseless and an exercise in bad faith.
In one of the court papers titled: ‘Notice of Preliminary Objection’, Emefiele argued that Uboh’s case was predicated on mere suspicion and fabricated allegations, incapable of invoking the court’s jurisdiction to entertain the suit.
He further contended that Uboh not only lacked the locus to institute the suit but that the entire suit was an abuse of court process.
At the time of filing in this report, no date has been fixed to hear the objection.