Senator Dino Melaye, representing Kogi-West Senatorial District has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to take drastic measures on the ailing economy, including the immediate sack of the minister of finance, Kemi Adeosun, minister of budget and national planning, Senator Udo Udoma and the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Godwin Emefiele. Melaye in a statement in Abuja yesterday.
He said the president must shake up his cabinet and accused some members of cabinet as lacking the capacity to deliver on the mandates of their ministries and agencies. He said Adeosun, Udoma and Emefiele should be axed for the economy to be effectively rebooted to deliver on the change agenda of the present administration. Melaye said:
“At the moment, it must be crystal clear to all discerning minds that the President’s widely-acclaimed magical body language has lost its presumed aura and efficacy. His no-nonsense demeanor is equally neither instilling fear nor commanding respect and loyalty from among his cabinet members.”
“It is therefore obvious that the time for barking is over; now is the time to bite and boot out all those who have demonstrated, in the past several months, a crass lack of capacity to effectively carry out the functions of their office.”
The All Progressives Congress senator, also condemned Buhari’s economic team led by Vice President Yemi Osibanjo, saying that “their decisions will not be and has never been respected by the economic managers and the bureaucracy in Nigeria.” On Udoma Udo Udoma, he stated:
“To be sure, Senator Udoma Udo Udoma is a very charismatic man, an accomplished lawyer, and a quintessential gentleman with a fairly untainted reputation. In everyday parlance, he is a good man.”
“But the critical job of Budget and National Planning Minister for a huge country like Nigeria, with her prevailing economic challenges requires much more than being a good man with a great personality.”
On the CBN governor, Senator Melaye pointed to his disastrous handling and release of the so-called Dasuki-gate funds which amounts to about 15 per cent of the nation’s foreign reserves, policy flip-flops, somersaults and inconsistencies as clear evidence of gross incompetence in the management of the nation’s fiscal and monetary policies.
The net effect of this inconceivable ineptitude on the part of Emefiele, according to Melaye is the free fall in the value of the naira and the total loss of faith and confidence by the international community on the Nigerian economy.
Melaye urged the President to, instead, constitute an ‘Emergency Ad Hoc Economic Team’ made up of all former ministers of finance, ex-ministers of budget and national planning, ex-CBN governors as well as members drawn from the academia with “deep knowledge of developmental economics to drive the economic revival programme.” He said:
“The President must immediately transit from mere rhetoric to drastic but positive action to save the economy and Nigeria from total collapse. The hunger in the land is real, pervasive, widespread and debilitating for the poor masses.”
Nigeria’s minister of finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun recently spoke on Nigeria’s recent slide into recession. Adeosun expressed confidence that the economy will turn-around in no time, assuring Nigerians that the recent slide into recession will not last long. She however called for discipline in government spending, even as she noted that the Nigerian economy is long overdue for diversification.