Kingsley Moghalu, a former CBN deputy governor, has cautioned the National Assembly against rushing through a review of the CBN Act 2007 (as modified).

Moghalu said he fully backs the current law’s implied prohibition on partisan political activity by the CBN governor and deputy governors in a message he made on his social media site X on Tuesday.

“Two bills sponsored by Senators @nassnigeria to review the CBN Act 2007 (as amended) should be handled carefully,” said the former CBN deputy governor. The proposal to have an external director chair the Board of Directors rather than the CBN Governor as is the case at present is a BAAAD idea, but I do support making it explicitly illegal for the Governor and DepGovs of @cenbank to engage in partisan politics (although the current law implicitly does so, prohibiting them from engaging in any “employment or vocation” outside their central banking duties). If passed, this would threaten the central bank’s mandated autonomy.

“The best global practice,” meaning the Governor, “is to have the Board of Directors chaired by the Governor.”Given the pervasive partisan politicization of Nigerian institutions that should be nonpartisan but have instead become appendages of whichever political party is in power, this provision would leave the door open for the CBN to publicly succumb to this illness.

Apparently out of self-interest, “the NASS and President Buhari condoned the excesses of the previous Governor Godwin Emefiele and encouraged such illegalities (such as, N23 trillion Ways and Means lending to the fiscal authorities by the monetary authority; and the previous Governor attempting to vie for the Office of the President under a severe hallucination that he could move directly from the CBN into Aso Rock without resigning his position). Despite this anomaly, there is no cause to undermine the institution’s autonomy.

Those who violate norms of conduct should face personal consequences. We pray that the ruthless destruction of the CBN’s professionalism by Emefiele’s pawning of it to cabals and politicians, and the resulting devastation to our economy, will never happen again in Nigeria.

Our political leaders must put their own agendas aside and make this important appointment in the best interest of the country. Giving a sick person poison as treatment won’t help them get better. While I was serving as Deputy Governor under Governor Lamido Sanusi in 2012, a similar attempt was made. We fought back fiercely. “The current squad led by @YemiCardoso ought to.”

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