Nigerian Senate on Thursday confirmed the nominations of Mrs. Aisha Ahmad and Mr. Edward Adamu as deputy governors of the Central Bank of Nigeria, paving the way for the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Bank to hold its meeting slated from April 3 and 4.
The Senate also confirmed Prof. Adeola Festus Adenikinju, Dr. Aliyu Rafindadi Sanusi and Dr. Robert Chikwendu Asogwa as members of the MPC.
It, however, rejected the nomination of Dr. Asheikh A. Maidugu as a member of the MCP.
Having concluded its screening and confirmation process, the Senate transmitted its resolutions on the nominees to President Muhammadu Buhari for further action required to enable them attend the meeting of the MPC.
The resolutions followed the adoption of the recommendations of its Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions.
Chairman of the committee, Senator Rafiu Ibrahim, said while all the nominees performed well at the screening and were cleared by relevant security agencies, Maidugu did not respond satisfactorily to some questions.
“The nominee (Maidugu) was interviewed by the committee and he responded to the questions asked by the members, but the committee was dissatisfied with his response to the independence required for each member of the MPC, and we are concerned that a regular civil servant who is ladened with bureaucracy and red-tapism, may not be independent in his judgment on each crucial decision of the MPC that affects directly the whole economy,” Ibrahim said.
He stated that the three other nominees for the MPC had displayed the vast knowledge needed to facilitate the attainment of the objectives of price stability and the formulation of monetary and credit policies of the CBN.
“The three nominees are knowledgeable in the operations of the CBN Act and the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act,” Ibrahim added.
Senate Majority Leader, Senator Ahmed Lawan, speaking after the nominations had been adopted, called on the president to quickly send in a replacement for the rejected nominee.
He also urged the Senate to make concessions for the screening of members of the governing board of the CBN, as the MPC requires at least two more persons to form the required quorum.
Presiding, Senate President Bukola Saraki said the request to consider the screening of the governing board nominees would be taken at plenary next week.
He congratulated the nominees and urged them to justify the confidence reposed in them by the president.
“At this point, let me congratulate the two nominees. Particularly Mr. Edward Lamatek Adamu whose upliftment to deputy governor will be of great encouragement to the staff of the CBN who will see one of their own in this position. I am sure it will boost the morale within the institution.
“Let me also commend and congratulate Mrs. Aishah Ahmad for her nomination to this very competitive role,” he added.
Saraki said the new deputy governors were appointed at a time when the economy was a major issue and expressed optimism that they would work with the governor of the CBN to reposition the national economy.
“We have just come out of a recession and we need to continue with our economic growth and see the sustainability of the foreign exchange and other related challenges.
“We hope also that you all will continue to work closely with the National Assembly to update us on the progress that is achieved by the central bank,” Saraki said.