CBN indicts Buhari’s economic managers for worsening recession

Ebun Francis

The central bank of Nigeria has placed the blame for  the persistent economic recession in the country squarely on the foot of those President Muhammadu Buhari appointed to manage the economy. In scathing attack on Wednesday at the chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, roundtable, Mr Moses Tule, the Director of Policy of the CBN, said the on-going economic recession and the hardship it has inflicted on the citizenry has persisted because of the application of wrong prescription by non-professionals.

In the words of Mr Tule,  “Some came in as doctors into the macro-economic management and are giving the tools of medical doctors to advise on how to solve the problem of recession. Some came in as carpenters and they are using carpentry tools to advise on the problems of economic recession; some came in as engineers and they are using their tools to advise on how to address economic recession. “They have not allowed the professionals to do their jobs. They have not allowed the professional to provide the direction.”

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Mr Tule stated that since early 2015, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) had, consistently warned that the nation will slip into recession if adequate and urgent steps were not taken but that the warnings according to him fell on deaf ears.

Detailing how Nigeria slipped  recession,  the CBN director said: “Oil prices are down. Not only are oil prices down, the Niger Delta Avengers have blown up oil producing facilities and export facilities, severally. “When they blew the Forcados , it took government six months to fix Forcados. That was a loading bay. And after fixing it, they went back and blew it again. So we have oil prices and production going down. The implication is that foreign exchange earnings are going down, but unfortunately, our import expenditure is not going down. It is still in the region of N976 billion, monthly.”

Mr Tule informed his audience that an already bad situation was worsened by Nigerians’preference for imported goods and an absence of export culture. He therefore cautioned that sitting down and blaming the Central bank of Nigeria and its leadership for the falling value of the naira was futile. Instead, we should according to him preoccupy ourselves with the question, “If we want to regain our place, how did we get here?   “The moment we began to prefer imported goods to our domestically produced goods, we laid the foundation and built the superstructure to where we are now. This is a conscious choice. Every country makes the choice where it wants to be. This is what we chose for ourselves as a country.”he concluded.