Anyaoku backs Buhari on naira devaluation

Anyaoku

It was a mix of political and economic ideologies at the Ondo State 40th Anniversary Symposium in Akure on Wednesday, as former Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Emeka Anyaoku, threw his weight behind President Muhammadu Buhari on his stand not to devalue the nation’s currency.

Mr. Anyaoku however met an opposition in the National Publicity Secretary of Afenifere, Yinka Odumakin, who argued that the policy of pegging the value of naira was breeding corruption.

Mr. Anyaoku, who was the chairman of the session, had opened the symposium with his opinion on the state of the naira, a topic he said was tangential to the theme of the event, “Curtailing Nigeria’s Centrifugal Forces”.

He said devaluing the naira would worsen the economic situation and cause a severe drain on the nation’s foreign reserves.

“In my view those calling for official devaluation of the naira need to come up with a good answer to Nigeria’s basic present problematic situation with its currency,” Mr. Anyaoku said.

“There is an incontrovertible fact that with the present level of the country’s dependence on imported goods, which results in a monthly import bill that is four times the value of our main export, which is traded in dollars, official devaluation of the naira vis-a-vis the dollar, will inevitably produce a further rise in inflation to the detriment of all of us, including, especially the masses.

“And besides, in such circumstances, devaluation will lead to an unacceptable drain on our country’s external reserves which is already worryingly depleted.

“The crux of the challenge we face with the current world price for crude oil is to devise policies for reducing the level of the country’s dependence on imported goods while in the mean time, allowing the dollar to float in the unofficial currency market with adequate safeguards being put in place by government to check round tripping in the management of the foreign exchange.”

Mr. Anyaoku also urged the president to, as a matter of urgency, convene a meeting of carefully chosen economic experts in the country to discuss the issue, as well as the wider issue of how to deal with the country’s current economic crisis.

Mr. Odumakin, who was a discussant at the symposium, disagreed with the seasoned diplomat, saying that the pegging of the naira at N199 to a dollar was encouraging corruption.

He said it was unfitting for the president to be talking about fixing a price for the naira, saying that such practice was in the past.

“The fact is what we are doing right now is that we are fighting corruption on one hand and promoting corruption on the other hand,” said Mr. Odumakin.

“If today Dangote walks into the CBN and the CBN gives him $1 billion, and say he should go and use it to trade, it would not make any sense to go and do any business, at the gate of CBN, he can make over N2 billion profit. That is what we are saying when we fix it at N199 and it is going for N400 in the black market.

“We should allow the naira to find its level. What we are doing presently is hurting the economy.”

He said the comments of the president in Egypt that he would not allow the naira to be devalued, and that those who have foreign taste should go and look for where to fund it, was unfortunate.

“The plane that took the president to Egypt was not made in Nigeria. The parts of that plane were not made in Nigeria. Everything that was budgeted for in Aso Rock this year are not made in Nigeria. The vehicles that they are riding in the villa, they are made abroad,” he argued.

“So at this point in time, naira must be allowed to find its level and should stop this corruption where we think we can peg the naira at N199, while the naira is on a free fall, you are only encouraging corruption.”

All rights reserved. This material and any other material on this platform may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, written or distributed in full or in part, without written permission from PREMIUM TIMES.


TEXT AD: Are you a ONE Minute Man? Forget Viagra: Use this new method to increase your manhood size and last more than 30 minutes.100 percent natural with no side effects. Click here for FREE details


  • Watch man

    Yinka, what you should be asking is “why will Dangote not be monitored to ensure that he uses $1bn for what he quoted that he wants to do with it?” Devaluation is simply predicated on perception and this is ephemeral and it cannot grow the economy.

    • share Idea

      Do you have a system in place to monitor everyone that have such privilege. Do not create an avenue for corruption as the country is already neck-deep in it. There is no way people that are connected to this government will not be abusing the current foreign exchange regime. It is only a matter of time for the public to be entertained about the abuse. Nigeria we hail thee

      • lala

        A simple solution is for the CBN to make direct Dollar payments to foreign recipients. Eliminate cash transactions and there would be no dollar hitting the black market from the CBN. Simple.

        • share Idea

          Thanks for thinking of simplistic view. What do you think CBN does with most dollar request – payment to foreign recipient (yes), does it occur to you that some Nigerians can go into alliance with those foreign companies and initiate a fraudulent business proposal that will make CBN to pay those foreign companies and the money will be routed back to the country and sold through black market.

          The high level of disparity between the two rates will even make a very honest person to be dishonest if presented with the opportunity. How much do you think is the profit margin for most business ventures that the ROI for foreign exchange rate is nearly 50%. My gee we need to discourage avenues that will breed corruption, I’m still 1000% sure that people connected to this administration is making a kill in several unconventional governance style of this clueless government. Posterity will vindicate people like us . Nigeria we hail thee

          • Omoba1

            You have a point. However, a business whose directors engage in such purpose do not have the company’s interest and has failed in its fiduciary responsibility. I believe the CBN should be able to screen geninue dollar needs from fictitious ones. The ban on specified goods for dollars should still continue and more should be included

        • Omoba1

          My thought exactly. What is the nonsense with cash. Simply wire the money to the supplier. CBN should create a Settlement department for this purpose. If you leave it to the commercial Banks they will abuse the process.

      • tundemash

        Tell us the effect of the devaluation of naira by the IBB govt.

  • Victor Aikhionbare

    Odumakin vs Anyaoku is a no brainer. One is a local champion wannabe acting big man while the other is an accomplished renowned international elder statesman with buckets of credibility. Need I say more.

    • Sir Demo

      God bless you jare! He has always being a nuisance in the mold of FFK and Ebun Adegboruwa

  • Dare

    What Nigerians need is transparency in the system. That is why all serious minded Nigerians should support Federal government fight against corruption. In a society where act of corruption is punishable, there wouldn’t be a problem of a business man diverting foreign currency obtained for foreign business transactions to black market. Such businessman would be reprimanded by the necessary government agency for his action. People should stop attacking government policy because of who made the policy. Devaluation of Naira would not stop people that one to outsmart Nigerians from doing so. What we need is a system that allows people to be taken accountable for whatever they do.

  • Sir Demo

    What do that legal charlatan, Odumakin becomes an economist?

    • Mentor

      Please tell them oh! There are many charlatans like him out there turning themselves into pseudo economists and puffing out nonsense. Even the IMF just clearly stated essentially that any devaluation ( euphemism for market forces) has be part of a credible policy package including fiscal discipline, institutional governance, tackling corruption, infrastructure efficiencies, social intervention and inclusive growth aim at raising productivity and productive capacity of the Nigerian economy.

  • Ademola

    I would like Odumakin to tell us what was the after effect of Babangida devaluation of Naira immediately he became the military Head of State. That singular action of Babangida thrown Nigerians into the economy mess we are still battling with today. The previous regimes have devalued Naira one time or the other in the past, yet, Nigerians continue to drown in poverty. Nigeria need economic and financial discipline. The issue of “National Cake” should be dealt with. It is high time people stop forming pressure or ethnic groups to press money into their individual pocket pretending they are fighting for their people. Let us lay aside, ethnicity, tribalism and religion sentiments and let us take up integrity and good value. The future of Nigeria depends on how serious we all ready to conquer corruption, reward integrity and good value.

    • Johnson

      That was how they pressured Babangida into devaluing the Naira quite steeply and suddenly. The administration forgot that many budding companies took dollar loans to fund industries (NERFUND). Overnight those companies could not meet their dollar obligations, factories started closing in droves, industrialists became importers/traders and many banks failed. The hope for Nigeria’s industrialization went up in smoke.Corruption and spendthrift became official policies to the point that when Nigeria had an oil windfall it neither improved the value of the Naira nor the economic well-being of Nigerians.

  • Gugurus Ekpa

    Mr Emeka Anyaoku is absolutely correct.

  • FirecloudOFGOD

    I am with you 101%

  • Spoken word

    Odumakin you will soon vomit all the loot you collected from GEJ.and your Magodo home will be marked by EFCC.

  • favourtalk

    Nigeria is with PMB all the time, we all know that he is fighting for the interest of us all not for some deluded odumakin in the system. Nigeria shall be great again

  • tunde

    Smart nigerians have debated the pros& cons of naira finding its value in the forex, not only in the academia but also in the back alleys for years and they all came to the question “how do we help domestic industries grow?So,Odumakin,if you love nigeria,your current position and arguement was extensively covered,you should closely look at the president’s point of view.Chairman Mao Zedong ,resorted to same economic policy and where is China now?Should nigeria not be self sufficient in feeding her citizens,Odumakin?Take it from there.

  • MI

    Odumakin is completely out of point. Given that Nigeria is dealing with excess looted funds littered all over the country, we have to be careful about what is true of our economy and what’s not. The moment those illicit sources are blocked or dry up, things will fall in place…..for all intend and purposes devaluation is not the answer to our woes. Fight corruption, recover stolen wealth, massive investment in infrastructure, improve power, diversification(flaming / solid minerals) and manufacturing – less import more export are the solution to our problem.

  • Basketmouth

    Let us look at the centerpiece of Odumakin’s argument. He said that if the Central Bank gave $1 billion dollar to Dangote to trade, according to him it will be better for Dangote to sell that money in the parallel market and make double profit than to do business for which the money was given in the first place. My response to Odumakin is that your brain has been so much infested and ravaged by the neurosis of corruption that you think illegality all the time. The worse is that he believe everybody’s brain is ravaged like his. While I agree that our banks are complicit in round tripping of dollars for quick returns, it is an evidence that the war on corruption should be extended to the private sector of the economy. How do we now explain the drastic drop in the exchange rate at the parallel market? Supposing Buhari has devalued the naira last week and merge it with the parallel market rate @ 400 naira to the dollar, what would have been our gain. Odumakins of this world are used to corruption and it has beclouded their sense of reasoning that they don’t even think of tomorrow no more but today.

    • Usman

      You’re right

  • David Adeniran

    This Odumakin guy has become a continuous NUISANCE, having lost the very little relevance he used to have.

  • Daniel

    The interest of the masses is more important. Though a few may be engaging in round tripping, devaluation will have a general and catastrophic effect on the masses. Inflation will sky-rocket and that will have a worsening effect on salaries of workers.

    What essential items do we manufacture as a country?

    Whatever the government consumes is imported at the official exchange rate of N197.

  • Hakins

    My sense is we require an FX determination mechanism that is transparent. I think the argument shouldn’t be whether to devalue or not, but the way in which the fx rate is determined should be addressed. The value of the Naira should ideally be tied to proceeds from oil because that is the main source of FX. The USD has strengthened against major global currencies, the case for the Naira shouldn’t be different. By keeping Naira artificially high, we are subsidizing imports, which is consumptive and detrimental to local production. Again, foreign investors won’t come in since they can’t determine their translation risk at the point of investment. We need a transparent fx determination mechanism.

  • Joe igbokwe

    YINKA ODUMAKIN IS IN REAL TROUBLE. ANYWHERE HE GOES TROUBLES TRAILS BEHIND. I HAVE FOLLOWED EVERY ARGUEMENT DOWN HERE AND JUST RAN AWAY WITH THE THINKING THAT YINKA HAS INCURRED THE WRATH OF EVERYBODY. NOW HOW DID YINKA GET TO THIS SORRY PASS? WHERE DID THE RAIN START BEATING HIM? WHERE DID YINKA LEAVE HIS THINKING CAP ALL THESE YEARS? WHO STOLE YINKA’S THINKING FACULTY? Oro pe si je!

  • Joe igbokwe

    YINKA ODUMAKIN IS IN REAL TROUBLE. ANYWHERE HE GOES TROUBLES TRAIL BEHIND. I HAVE FOLLOWED EVERY ARGUEMENT DOWN HERE AND JUST RAN AWAY WITH THE THINKING THAT YINKA HAS INCURRED THE WRATH OF EVERYBODY. NOW HOW DID YINKA GET TO THIS SORRY PASS? WHERE DID THE RAIN START BEATING HIM? WHERE DID YINKA LEAVE HIS THINKING CAP ALL THESE YEARS? WHO STOLE YINKA’S THINKING FACULTY? Oro pe si je