Anambra State Governor Willie Obiano yesterday hailed President Muhammadu Buhari for recommending the retention of Godwin Emefiele as the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The governor’s commendation came as the Senate began Emefiele’s confirmation for another five-year tenure.

Buhari’s request for Emefiele’s confirmation as governor of the apex bank was on the Order Paper.

Marked: “Executive Communication” and listed against Senate Leader Ahmed Lawan, it reads “Renewal of the appointment of Godwin I. Emefiele as Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria.

“That the Senate do consider the request of Mr. President, C-in-C on the renewal of

the appointment of Godwin I. Emefiele as Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria in accordance with Section 8(1) and (2) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007.”

The Senate Leader moved that the request be referred to the appropriate committee for consideration.

Senate President Bukola Saraki referred the President’s request to the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions for further legislative action.

The committee, chaired by Senator Rafiu Adebayo Ibrahim, it was learnt, will give the screening accelerated consideration due to its urgency.

Emefiele’s first term will expire on June 2.

Asked about the alleged “flood of petitions” against Emefiele’s recommendation for reappointment, a National Assembly source noted that “the petitions for whatever they are worth would be considered by the committee”.

“It is the duty of the committee, apart from considering the request of Mr. President for the confirmation of the reappointment of the CBN governor as referred, to also look at whatever petitions against the nominee.

“If the committee fails to consider petitions against the nominee, any Senator has the right to raise the issue at the committee of the whole when the report of the committee will be considered.

“I will, however, tell you that it is not abnormal for petitions to be written against a nominee for appointment. It does not end at writing petitions.

“The appropriate committee will consider the merit or otherwise of such petitions. If a petition is found to be frivolous, the committee will make its recommendations accordingly.”

President Buhari’s letter was read on the floor of the Senate by Saraki.

Obiano hailed the President’s decision to reappoint Emefiele.

In a statement in Awka through his Commissioner for Information and Public Enlightenment, C Don Adinuba, the governor praised Buhari for reappointing Emefiele.

He said the people of Anambra were excited on the reappointment because it was “based purely on merit and an appreciation of the values of policy consistency, national interest, financial system stability and a strong desire for rapid national economic growth”.

Obiano was quoted as saying in the statement: “One thing which Mr Emefiele’s reappointment signifies is that President Buhari has started in earnest the implementation of the new policy of inclusiveness which he assured the Nigerian people after his reelection last February and an issue which he and I have been discussing in private.

“Though Emefiele was appointed the CBN Governor five years ago by erstwhile President Goodluck Jonathan, President Buhari saw the need for him to continue in office in the overriding interest of the nation.

“The President deserves commendation for standing firm on his decision on Emefiele’s reappointment, unlike a former President who was enamoured of Prof Chukwuma Charles Soludo’s brilliance, foresight, energy, patriotism and accomplishments as the CBN governor, but at the end of the day succumbed to pressures from those who didn’t want Prof Soludo back for parochial reasons.

“The nation should expect more balanced appointments from President Buhari in his second term, and this is the pathway to national greatness.

“Massive economic progress can come about only when we choose the best candidates for key public offices, regardless of their ethnicity or the faith they profess.”

Obiano described Emefiele’s policies as courageous, sound and in the interest of the Nigerian people.

He believes that the Southeast will benefit more from Buhari in infrastructure and appointments in his second term.

Obiano described the President as a fair-minded person who does not want to injure any zone.

He said: “President Buhari did more for the Southeast in terms of providing critical infrastructure than in giving them key appointments, but he will this time do both because he is a fair-minded person who wants all sections of the country to have a great sense of belonging in the Nigerian federation.”

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