FROM ISAAC ANUMIHE, ABUJA
The dust raised by former president Olusegun Obasanjo’s swipe on President Goodluck Jonathan over the depletion of the nation’s foreign reserves and excess crude accounts, is yet to settle, as a development economist and financial analyst, Mr. Odilim Enwegbara, has taken the blame to the doorsteps of the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele.
Enwegbara told Daily Sun that the 2007 CBN Act gives CBN the sole power to manage Nigeria’s foreign reserve accounts, which it then uses in defence of the naira and in meeting Nigeria’s international trade obligations.
According to him, as soon as CBN receives the inflow of dollars, mostly from the country’s oil proceeds, it monetises it by exchanging the dollars into naira based on the prevailing exchange rate. The naira is then shared at the Federation Accounts Allocation Committee (FAAC) meetings by the three tiers of government.
“From then on, the dollars in the foreign exchange accounts belong to the CBN with the exception of the dollars in the Excess Crude Account (ECA), which also belongs to the three tiers of government and could only be shared based on agreement by the three tiers of government,” he said.
Should the Federal Government or any of the three tiers of government require dollars from the CBN’s managed foreign reserve accounts, such a government should provide the naira equivalent to CBN,” he said, expressing surprise that the former president should have known the management process of the foreign reserves and ECA.
Obasanjo should have been right if he blamed the CBN for mismanaging the country’s foreign reserve accounts while conducting its monetary policy all these years.
“Should Obasanjo make such allegations, he should blame not only Jonathan for recently appointing Godwin Emefiele as CBN governor but also himself for appointing Joseph Sanusi and Chukwuma Soludo and Yar’Adua for appointing Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, who all combined have truly mismanaged the country’s huge foreign reserve accounts in their false defence and keeping the naira artificially overvalued.
Source : SunOnline