News / Africa

Nigeria's Cenbank Governor to Challenge Suspension in Court

FILE - Nigeria's central bank governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi gestures during an interview with Reuters in London.
FILE - Nigeria's central bank governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi gestures during an interview with Reuters in London.
Reuters
Nigeria's graft-fighting Central Bank Governor Lamido Sanusi said on Friday he would go to court to challenge his suspension by the president, saying he did not want his job back but wanted to question the legality of the move.
 
President Goodluck Jonathan suspended Sanusi on Thursday, removing an increasingly outspoken critic of the government's record on tackling rampant corruption in Africa's top oil producer.
 
Since the suspension, presidential spokesman Reuben Abati has listed alleged procurement irregularities at the central bank during Sanusi's tenure, most of them dating back to 2011.
 
Sanusi told Reuters in a phone interview that he had already been in correspondence about queries concerning the bank's budget, and that he had been through all the processes outlined by the bureau of public procurement.
 
“I'm going to court to challenge the suspension,” he said. “I'm concerned about the precedent... I'm concerned about the idea that if you want to remove someone and you want a way around the law, you just write any kind of letter with all sorts of funny allegations and suspend the person.”
 
But he added he had no intention of retaking the post.
 
Sanusi, who was due to end his term in June, had been presenting evidence to parliament that he said showed the state oil company Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) failed to remit $20 billion that it owed to federal government coffers. NNPC has repeatedly denied Sanusi's allegations.
 
“I'm not going back. I have had my last day at work. I'm very glad to hand this over,” he said.
 
Markets panicked over the suspension of a man whose policies are credited with stabilizing the naira and bringing inflation in Africa's second biggest economy to single digits.
 
The naira fell one percent against the dollar on Friday, although it has not moved since the central bank said it hoped to keep it within its current band of 150-160 to the dollar.
 
Longer term, it is unclear whether investors will be put off Nigeria, whose governance problems are balanced on the positive side by attractive prospects, including abundant energy reserves, a potentially huge consumer market and a fast-growing economy.
 
Sanusi said he never intended to be an anti-corruption crusader, but had been alarmed by the sheer extent of losses to the treasury by corruption at the state oil firm.
 
“I'm trying to get to the heart of collapsing oil revenues,” he said.
 
“My primary motive ... is that oil prices have not come down, oil output has not come down, [but] oil revenues are crashing, and therefore my job as central bank governor in managing the exchange rate and reserves is threatened.”
 
Some commentators, including twice president and former Jonathan mentor Olusegun Obasanjo, have said oil corruption now is worse than at any time since the end of military rule in 1999, a charge Jonathan dismisses as politically motivated.
 
“I haven't compared it to any other [presidential] terms, but I've certainly been alarmed by what I've seen,” Sanusi said.

You May Like

US Gives Malaysia Questionable Upgrade in Human Trafficking Ranks

Malaysia’s upgrade seen as removing barrier to country’s participation in the US-led 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership More

Turkey, US Try to Establish Buffer Despite Differences

Coalition airstrikes in proposed zone would aim to drive out Islamic extremists, allowing targeted area to come under sway of anti-Assad rebels More

Video US: Millions Exploited by Vast Fortunes of Human Trafficking

State Department's annual report calls exploitation 'modern slavery,' brutalizing girls, women into prostitution and forcing men, women and children into low-wage jobs across the globe More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: PETER OLUNIYI from: Lagos
February 23, 2014 10:37 AM
It is now very obvious that President Goodluck Johnathan is not only encouraging corruption but also promoting it. By suspending the Central Bank governor, he is telling every Nigeria to be corrupt.

by: Anuoluwapo Oladipo from: Nigeria
February 22, 2014 7:24 AM
If Sanusi wants to be hot, he should be hot, If Sanusi wanted to be cold he should be cold.
You cannot mix both and not be spewed out. There is corruption in NNPC no doubt about that and likewise there is corruption in Central Bank. It is a case of kettle calling pot black.
The way and manner he went about destroying Oceanic Bank, Intercontinental bank etc shows personal vendetta. That is why those banks were either acquired or nationalized without following due process. Sanusi weakened those banks further by appointing cronies as CEO's who destroyed those banks by granting undue waivers.
The man must answer for his sins and those friends he appointed as CEO's to those banks that went under must be charged to court. The unjust write-offs granted to their friends to the tune of billions of naira must also be revisited and reversed. I admonished the erstwhile sacked CEO's to approach the law courts and tender the state in which they left those banks before Sanusi's illegal intervention which was not backed by any law at that time.
I also admonish all ordinary shareholders who lost fortunes to seek a medium to challenge the atrocities committed by Sanusi Lamido led Central Bank in the court of law.
Secondly the mismanagement or should I say the taking undue advantage of loop holes in the CBN act makes Sanusi an immoral man. How on earth can someone justify spending over one billion naira to feed police officers attached to CBN and private guards. This is rather absurd and can only be nothing except corruption. What is the justification behind doling out money to boko aram victims in Kano without appropriation, investing Nigerian tax payers money in an Islamic Bank in Malaysia, Flying and distributing currency all over Nigeria using frivolous Airlines that probably Sanusi has interest in among others.
How can a man given the mandate to manage Nigeria's Central Bank not be accountable by being corrupt? Those useless awards that Central Bank was buying at ridiculous amount of naira only portraits inferiority complex.
While there is the urgent need to sanitize the NNPC, there is also an equal need to sanitize the Central Bank and put upright unbiased people at the helm of affairs.
I make bold to say that in other for the Federal Government of Nigeria not to be seen as partisan, the following ministers and directors must also be shown the way out of government;
(i) Minister for Petroleum.
(ii) NNPC Managing Director
(iii) Finance Minister.

by: Gabriel Umoh from: Port Harcourt
February 21, 2014 4:01 PM
The allegations against Mr. Sanusi are indeed grave and we await the outcome of the investigations. His dabbling into political issues and anti government utterances has not helped his cause. As reported, he was openly hobnobbing with opposition party members and doling out huge questionable donations and contracts without due process. To cap it, he virtually thumbed his nose at the President and dared to be fired. Now he got his wish.

by: Ajakayi Ija
February 21, 2014 11:27 AM
It is shocking indeed that Nigeria's president Jonathan failed to order an investigation into the allegation by the Central Bank governor. Twenty billion dollars is about a fifth of the country's annual oil revenue.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Wini
X
July 28, 2015 12:21 AM
The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Iran Nuclear Pact Wins Few New US Congressional Backers

Later this week, President Barack Obama returns from a trip to Africa to confront a U.S. Congress roiled by the nuclear accord with Iran, an agreement that has received the blessing of the U.N. Security Council. Days of intensive lobbying and testimony by top administration officials have won few new congressional supporters of the pact. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Obama Encourages Kenya to Fix Cultures of Corruption, Discrimination

President Barack Obama bid farewell to Kenya Sunday with a major speech at as stadium outside the capital Nairobi where he called on Kenyans to change the cultures of corruption and discrimination that can hold society back. VOA East Africa Correspondent Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video California Towns Welcome Special Olympics Athletes

Cities and towns in Southern California are greeting thousands of athletes who are arriving for Special Olympics, a competition for people with intellectual disabilities. The games will run from July 25th through August 2nd. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, where athletes from Namibia, Singapore and Tanzania got a rousing welcome from local residents.
Video

Video Critics of Japan Defense Policy Focus on Okinawa

In Okinawa, many locals have long complained that Tokyo places an unfair burden on the tiny island by locating most of Japan's U.S. military bases there. As Japan's government moves toward strengthening and expanding the country's defense policies, opponents of those plans are joining local protesters in Okinawa, voicing concern about where the country is headed. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Okinawa.
Video

Video IS Uses Chemical Weapons in Syrian Attack

Islamic State militants have added a new weapon in their arsenal of fear: chemical weapons. VOA Kurdish service reporter Zana Omer was on the scene within hours of a recent attack in Hasakah, Syria, and has details of the subsequent investigation, in this report narrated by Miguel Amaya.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.
Video

Video Hoverbike Flying Toward Reality

Another long-standing dream of many technological inventors is quickly approaching reality: U.S.- and British-based firms are cooperating in the development of an individual flying platform they call a hoverbike. They say it may revolutionize the concept of flying, including in the U.S. military. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video As Japan Expands Defense Role, Protests Follow

The Japanese government is moving forward with a controversial security bill that would authorize the military to fight abroad for the first time since World War II. Leaders say it is critical to defend against rising threats from China and North Korea. VOA’s Brian Padden reports from Japan on the big changes ahead, and the opposition they are drawing.
Video

Video Replacing Poppies with Coffee in Myanmar

The remote mountains of Myanmar’s Shan state are home to the second-largest opium-producing region in the world. After a drop during the 2000s, production surged in the past eight years to feed an increasing demand for heroin in China. But farmers are now making less on the crop, and the U.N. is hoping many will make the switch to growing coffee. Daniel de Carteret reports for VOA from Taunggyi.

VOA Blogs