The House of Representatives on Wednesday resolved to invite Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, Central Bank of Nigeria governor to explain to it, where he derived his powers to donate N225 million to victims of Boko Haram attacks and construction of a bridge. The CBN governor had donated N100 million for the construction of a bridge in the University of Benin, N100 million to victims of the Kano bombings and N25 million to the Madalla bomb blast victims. It also urged the executive to set up a relief, compensation and charity fund to be managed by NEMA.
The resolution emanated from a motion moved by Rep. Uzo Azubuike (PDP-Abia) which was unanimously adopted. Leading the debate, Azubuike noted that the functions of the apex bank as provided for in the CBN Act 2007 did not include building of infrastructure, provision of emergency relief and philanthropy. Azubuike said that assistance to families of bomb attacks victims ought to have come from relevant agencies charged with the responsibilities of providing relief in emergency situations.
“The current practice by the CBN of diverting and misusing public funds to the building of infrastructural projects and assistance to victims of bomb attacks does not only constitute usurpation of the functions of other agencies of government but is inherently unlawful. The CBN governor has been taking actions and making statements on political and other issues in conflict with government policies,’’ he said. He recalled that the CBN governor in the past had released the sum of N650 billion from public funds to distressed banks.
The legislator warned that if he was not called to order by the House, the bank would lose focus in actualization of its mandate. Rep. Femi Gbajabiamila (ACN-Lagos), the minority leader of the House said that it was time the House ascertained the definite role of the bank. He said that there was no provision in the bank’s Act that empowered the apex bank to take the role of NEMA. Rep.Betty Apiafi (PDP-Rivers) said that the CBN Act prevented the bank from engaging in agriculture and infrastructure projects. She advised the bank to concentrate more on issues of regulation rather than philanthropy. Rep. Goni Lawal (ANPP-Yobe) said that there were bomb attacks in Damaturu, but the CBN refused to make any donations to the victims.
According to him, the actions of the CBN governor was only creating problems for the country. Rep. Zakari Mohammed (PDP-Kwara), the chairman of House committee on Media and Public Affairs said reducing governance to areas where one came from was unacceptable. Rep. Muniru Hakeem (ACN-Lagos) said the apex bank governor should be called to order to face his work. In another motion, the House has urged the Office of the Head of Service, Auditor-General of the federation to carry out a comprehensive biometric data of all federal civil servants to stem the issue of Ghost workers. This was sequel to a motion moved by Rep. Daniel Asuquo (PDP-Akwa Ibom) which was unanimously adopted.
Leading the debate, Asuquo noted that the Integrated Personnel and Pay Roll Information Syytem (IPPIS ) initiated by government led to the detection of 43, 000 ghost workers form 36 MDAs.