Former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Charles Soludo, says former President Goodluck Jonathan ran the apex bank like Idi-Amin Dada of Uganda ran his country. Idi-Amin, who ruled his country between 1971 and 1979, was regarded as a dictator based on his style of governance.
In an interview in the current business edition of The Interview, the former CBN governor said the bank was “the ATM of the presidency,” under Jonathan.
“Imagine a scenario where a president can order the CBN to create an intervention fund for national stability and CBN literally ‘prints’ say, N3 trillion, and doles it out cash to the Presidency to prosecute an election campaign or for just about anything he fancies. It is a scary thought,” he was quoted as saying.
“We are going down a dangerous path that ruins the economy. I don’t know any other country where such is tolerated, except perhaps what I watched in a movie about Idi Amin and his governor of central bank.
“Recent revelations regarding the ‘arms-gate’ (short for the $2.1billion scandal involving former NSA Sambo Dasuki) and the apparent abuse of the CBN as ATM by the presidency should get reasonable people thinking.”
He said it was regrettable that in spite of the bank’s statutory independence, it continues to be a victim of high-wire politics, often “electrocuting” the bank’s leadership.