Nigerians have continued to react to President Muhammadu Buhari’s Tuesday directive to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to stop the provision of foreign exchange palliative for the importation of food items into the country.
Buhari was quoted to have said “Don’t give a cent to anybody to import food into the country,” during a session with the All Progressives Congress (APC) governors to Eid-el-Kabir lunch in his country home in Daura, Katsina State.
Garba Shehu who is the spokesperson to the president noted that the directive became necessary after the president said his administration has achieved food security.
Nonetheless, prominent personalities are weighing in on the directive saying that it was ill-conceived while others have thrown their support for the idea.
Kingsley Moghalu, who is the former Governor of the CBN noted in a series of tweets saying that the directive will result in a negative outcome to the economy.
“The implication of this draconian order is that importers will go to the parallel market to purchase dollar and in turn increase dollar value to Naira, and at the end put pressure on our reserve and Naira,” Mr Moghalu explained.
The Young Progressives Party (YPP) Presidential candidate in the 2019 general elections said that the country should mix politics with economic issues and urged the government to make the country’s agriculture competitive and import will fizzle out on its own.
“Our economy will not be saved by ad hoc political decisions like this (directive on FOREX) handed down by the very institutions that should be shielded from the whim and caprices of politicians.
“The issue here isn’t whether or not CBN should allow access to FOREX for food imports. It is about whether such an economic policy of a Central Bank should be imposed by a political authority. A major reason for our poverty, instability and weak economy is weak institutions,” he added.
A former World Bank Vice President and presidential aspirant, Oby Ezekwesili lashed out at President Buhari in a twitter thread branding him as an ‘out-of-touch leader’.
A completely out-of-touch ‘leader’. He is cocooned away in the grandeur of @AsoRock where they serve him delicatessen and praise-sing to him: “Ranka dede Sir, your Agriculture Policy is working wonderfully. All farmers in Nigeria are now Billionaires & exporting to the US”👎🏾
— Oby Ezekwesili (@obyezeks) August 14, 2019
The two-time minister and Chattered Accountant said she will provide Nigerians with latest reports showing that the country is nowhere close to solving its food security crisis:
Convener of Bring Back Our Girls campaign Aisha Yesufu, criticised the president’s decision tweeting; “When are we going to put a stop to forex for importation of petroleum products? Isn’t Nigeria self-sufficient to refine the crude oil it has? When would the experience you had being Minister of Petroleum all those years ago be put to use? When?!” she added.
Ace comedian Alibaba supports the decision saying it was long overdue:
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