The Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA) Resource Centre has given Godwin Emefiele, governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) a 14-day ultimatum to resign from his position and pursue his political ambition or disassociate himself publicly from such speculations.
The Green Alliance, a coalition group, had last week asked Emefiele to contest for the 2023 presidency.
Wale Fapounda, convener of the group, said the country needs a technocrat who can handle the affairs of the country.
The group added that the CBN governor understands global economic growth and that the group would compel him to accede to its request to run for the presidency under the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Responding, Emefiele said he would leave his ‘fate’ firmly in the hands of God as regards the choice of the leadership of the country in 2023.
In a letter written and copied to President Muhammadu Buhari and Senate President Ahmed Lawal, the chairman of HEDA, Olanrewaju Suraju acknowledged that the CBN boss has a “constitutional right to contest for any election in Nigeria, including that of President, but wants him to take a stand now than keeping Nigeria at sea.”
He added, “It has been widely published in the media that the Central Bank of Nigeria Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele is planning to contest in the 2023 general election to be President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and a group by the name The Green Alliance recently addressed the press on the subject matter of Emefiele for President.
“By virtue of being the Governor of the apex bank in Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele is not eligible to contest for any election in Nigeria or participate in politics. By the provisions of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act, he is statutorily barred from participating in politics or engaging in any other business for that matter.
“Section 9 of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act provide thus: ‘The Governor and the Deputy Governors shall devote the whole of their time to the service of the Bank and while holding office shall not engage in any full or part-time employment or vocation whether remunerated or not except such personal or charitable causes as may be determined by the Board and which do not conflict with or detract from their full-time duties.’”
Suraju maintained that HEDA, being a leading anti-corruption civil society organisation in Nigeria and a non-partisan human rights and development league with the mandate to protect and promote universally recognised human rights, public accountability, transparency and environmental justice in Nigeria and Africa, in accordance with international best standards, would continue to work assiduously to keep to its mandate.
He advised the CBN governor to either come out publicly and dissociate himself from the campaign or pursue his ambition of contesting for any election while in office. He said if he insists on contesting, he should adhere to the CBN Act and resign honourably within the next 14 days from the date of receipt of the letter.