As the controversy over the planned introduction of N5000 note deepens, a Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, lawmaker, Senator Ita Enang, has accused the Central Bank of Nigeria Governor, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi of plotting the fall of President Goodluck Jonathan with the ignoble plan.
Many Nigerians have kicked against the move by the CBN to issue the new note on the grounds that it would induce inflation and worsen the nation’s fragile economy but the bank is adamant over the issue.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with Vanguard, Enang, who is the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Business and Rules, described the arguments in favour of the new note as pedestrian and lacking in intellectual depth.
According to him, the plan amounts to a direct devaluation of the Naira in response to the demands of the World Bank and an effort on the path of those the bank had seconded to Nigeria in the name of employment to fulfill its mandate.
He also said apart from being at variance with the cashless policy of the CBN and the Money Laundering Act, the planned introduction of the higher currency would add no real value to the Naira or its purchasing power.
“I pray Mr. President should be sensitive to this and take action against the move because I am certain the plan is intended to embarrass the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and to make the government of Goodluck Jonathan unpopular in years to come so that people will not like to vote for him in the next election.
“I think what Sanusi is aiming at with the introduction of the plan against Nigerians is to ensure that the people will be so unhappy with the President that in the next election they would not like to vote for him.
“Mr. President should therefore call the CBN governor to order with immediate effect,” the lawmaker stated.
Enang also warned the 19 Northern governors of the consequences of their agitation for a review of the controversial onshore/offshore dichotomy, which was laid to rest eight years ago.
Northern Governors Forum had last week called for a review of the oil dichotomy to make more revenue available to the Federation Account for onward sharing to all the states. They argued that it was wrong to pay revenue accruing to the country from offshore proceeds to the nine littoral states.
He noted that the renewed attempt by the governors for a review of the law constituted a treasonable offence.
The lawmaker said, “The protagonists of the review should be ready for the consequences of their action. They should know that any action in that regard would trigger another round of crisis in the oil sector and possibly reduce production from the present 2.7 million barrels per day to 700 barrels per day.
“But above all, whoever is championing the call for the abrogation of the oil dichotomy law, which we passed into law many years ago, should know that it is a treasonable offence.
“I am saying so because treason is any act committed against the interest of the state,” Enang said.
The lawmaker, who represents Uyo Senatorial District of Akwa Ibom State, berated northern states for allowing their solid minerals to be illegally exploited and the resources kept away by known persons while turning round to share in the oil proceeds from the South.
The lawmaker said equity demands that all parts of the country should contribute something to the Federation Account for sharing by the Revenue Mobilisation, Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission, instead of some states behaving as parasites.
Enang absolved former President Obasanjo of any complicity in the onshore/offshore debacle, saying that it was the National Assembly that passed the bill into law after the Supreme Court had given its verdict on the matter.