Since the alleged presidential aspiration of the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria in the 2023 presidential election hit the headlines about two months ago, hardly has there been a week that the Delta State-born administrator did not come under attacks, criticisms and calls on him to resign. The mass hysteria exhibited by Emefiele detractors constantly finds ready space in both the traditional and new media, and these souls grab every opportunity to go for the jugular. They don’t even pretend that they have an axe to grind against Emefiele anymore, as the blatancy of their attacks now walks on all fours.
It no longer requires an extraordinary gift of intellect or possession of some supernatural powers to discern that some assailants are behind the constant calls for the resignation of the CBN Governor who has never been reported to have intimated anybody of his plan to contest the 2023 presidential election. These people who have an axe to grind have upped their game by engaging “civil societies” to do their bidding as seen in a report in the Punch newspapers of Monday, 4th April 2022.
As has been often stated by people or groups canvassing support for Emefiele, their activities are independent of the CBN Governor, who never had any prior knowledge or input. It is within the rights of anyone or group to support whoever they deem fit, but to crucify a man who did not prompt them to do so is disingenuous and overreaching.
Mallam Ibrahim Abubakar, a Financial Analyst and Rights Activist disagreed with CSOs that have come out to demand Emefiele’s resignation over the support he has been getting across Nigeria.
According to him, “That he has not shown interest or made any public declaration about the purported aspiration does not, however, negate his qualification and competence for it. He is supremely qualified, perhaps even more so than those who have already thrown their hats into the ring, especially if his sterling stewardship at the CBN is anything to go by. As things stand though, Emefiele has continuously reiterated that his job at the CBN, for which he was re-elected for a second term by President Muhammadu Buhari, remains his focus.”
In the same vein, a coalition under the auspices of the Emefiele Solidarity Vanguard has said it is outright blackmail to link the agitations directly to the CBN boss.
Addressing a press conference on Monday in Abuja, the ESV National Coordinator, Daniel Enyi, said that the campaigns and rallies, including those witnessed at the March 26 national convention of the All Progressives Congress, have no direct links to Emefiele.
Enyi said, “The latest campaign of calumny against the person of the CBN Governor is the branding of some Sharan minibuses by a support group, Green Alliance Movement. The ESV is also branding vehicles in support of Godwin Emefiele to persuade him to participate in the 2023 presidential elections.
“The images circulated on social media have nothing to do with the CBN governor directly; this is an attempt to box Emefiele to the corner. It is outright blackmail against his person to link the agitation directly to him.
“Many Nigerians have constituted themselves into various support groups for the CBN Governor in a clamour for him to contest the 2023 presidential election. As ESV, we have thousands of posters, T-shirts, and Billboards and have branded some of our cars in solidarity with the CBN Governor, this has nothing to do with him in person.”
Enyi noted that the actions of these groups, just like any other group rooting for different notable Nigerians, are simply based on the opinion of Nigerians on whom they want as President after the Buhari regime.
“As Nigerians, nobody can stop us from expressing our opinion on whom we feel should govern the country after 2023. We wish to make bold that the 2023 presidential election is far beyond an individual, as Nigeria belongs to all of us.
“We firmly believe that the economy needs a seasoned technocrat, an economist of all standards, who understands the monetary policy, diversification of the economy, and a patriotic Nigerian who shall improve the security situation and consolidate the gains of the Buhari’s regime. This we have found in Godwin Emefiele.
“We challenge anyone who has evidence of the CBN Governor consulting for the President or any other political office to tender the same before the general public. The CBN Governor is yet to accept the offer by Nigerians.
“We are confident that, if he makes up his mind to contest, he will declare in the open, as political office seeking cannot be done behind closed doors, especially the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” the ESV DG stated.
It is not surprising that this barrage of unwholesome attacks is targeted at the CBN Governor at a time when his stock continues to rise across the world, given his widely acknowledged strengthening and stabilisation of the Nigerian economy in the face of a global crash of oil prices. The takeaway from all of these is that necessity is the regular excuse for vandals. It is the mephistophelean plea used to legitimize devilish deeds.