by Ismaeel Ahmed
The CBN must openly give account of the deposits of the commonwealth on quarterly rounds and the source of the funds as well. Bottom line; there must be full transparency on actuality of the commonwealth not speculative parameters hidden in technical languages to further confuse a very suspicious citizenry.
In writing this month’s article, I was perplexed as to what to write, seeing that too much was happening too fast, and keeping track or making sense of it all was inundating. Most of these things were oscillating between politics and policy, economy and education, security and sincerity. However, the letter written by the Governor of Central Bank to the president on the issue of non remittance of funds by the National Oil Company, NNPC, puts the issue of the economy as a central point of these horror shows. The denial by NNPC that the CBN was simply being mischievous, or worse, ignorant of the stock in trade, was equally worrisome. And then, the CBN admitted, before the parliament, that the monies unaccounted for was not as big as they had thought, but they were still some missing. According to a reporter “only 10billion dollars” was unexplained.
It is trite knowledge that oil is the live wire of the Nigerian economy, and perhaps even unity. For many believe that without oil, this country would have parted ways a long time ago. The fulcrum of this article is not the viability of the oil stock or even the veracity or otherwise of CBN’s earlier or later positions. The issue is how, we, as Nigerians choose to dramatise our shameful conditions with mediocre and sometime outrageous attitudes. Why did it take the CBN a parliamentary hearing to adjust the figures? Who told anyone that 10billion dollars missing is any less grievous than 50 billion to the Nigerian people.
First, the CBN as a depository of the nation’s wealth ought to be governed by an astute, vehemently independent, knowledgeable and patriotic Nigerian economist. A characteristics many will agree the current Governor of CBN Lamido Sunusi, has in abundance. So the tacit denial by NNPC after the letter went viral, and claiming they had already responded to the president and accusing the CBN of mischief or ignorance, not in the letter to the president, but to the open public, just makes a mockery of the whole issue.
Although all the heads of the institutions are political appointees, they are nevertheless supposed to be professionals in their various fields. So the NNPC must clearly start publicly publishing on a monthly or quarterly basis the amounts of crude oil lifted, sold and at what price. It must also clearly state how the proceeds is deposited or disbursed and to what agency. The CBN must openly give account of the deposits of the commonwealth on quarterly rounds and the source of the funds as well. Bottom line; there must be full transparency on actuality of the commonwealth not speculative parameters hidden in technical languages to further confuse a very suspicious citizenry. Moreover, it makes all these muddy representations, accusations and letter writings unnecessary; the manager must be accountable to the shareholder.
Barr. Ismaeel Ahmed holds a Law Degree (LL.B) from University of Abuja, a Master of Arts Degree in International Relations and Diplomacy from Webster University, St. Louis, Missouri, United States of America.
Ahmed also holds a Masters of Law (LLM) from the University of Chicago, USA. He is a lawyer and a politician. He is currently the chairman of the All Progressives Youth Forum (APYF), a Youth body under the newly registered APC.
Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.