Senate summons CBN gov, Emefiele over Naira worsening status

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The Senate has summoned the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Godwin Emefiele to address it on the continuous depreciation of the value of the country’s currency, Naira.

According to the Senate, the invitation would enable the CBN governor intimate lawmakers the rationale behind the depreciation of the naira.

Also, the lawmakers have urged the Federal Government to diversify the economy into taxation, agriculture, manufacturing, international tourism and solid minerals’ prospecting.

The resolutions of the Senate were sequel to a motion by Senator Nazif Suleiman (Bauchi North), who expressed “serious concern on the state of the Nigerian economy as it affects the growing rate of the depreciation of the naira.”

The Senator, who noted that the Senate was worried that naira had depreciated in the last few months at a much faster rate than it had appreciated in the last two years, said: “The senate notes with serious concern the state of the Nigerian economy as it affects the growing rate of the naira.

“The cause of the depreciation is the consequence of the negative cash flow as a result of downward trend of oil price, which is further worsened by speculations in the foreign exchange market.

“It is also observed that the foreign exchange needs of the various sectors of the economy are now not being made available while Nigeria’s commitments in the global economy had dwindled.”

Senator Nazif Suleiman, who argued that the depreciation was the consequence of the negative cash flow, which he said resulted from the downward trend of oil price, said that situation had been worsened by speculations in the foreign exchange market.

He added that there was the urgent need to regulate demand and supply of foreign exchange by the CBN with various options considered to curtail naira depreciation and consequently discourage speculations.

Also contributing, Senator Gbolahan Dada (Ogun West) warned that if the situation was not effectively tackled, Nigeria must define its economic policies and make laws that will address fraud, even as he regretted that Nigeria’s dependence on imported items without tangible production is the bane of stable foreign exchange.

In his remarks, Senate President Bukola Saraki who noted that all powers must be deployed to defend the naira, said that the influx of foreign items into the country must be adequately curtailed in a way that activities of speculators are brought under control.

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