Governors elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party on Sunday knocked their counterparts from the All Progressives Congress and the authorities of the Central Bank of Nigeria for playing politics with a sincere economic advice given by the Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki.
The APC governors had, on Saturday, joined the debate on the controversial printing of N60 billion notes for March allocation, by criticising Obaseki over his comment.
A statement on Saturday, simply attributed to the Progressive Governors Forum, as an umbrella body for governors elected on the platform of the APC, castigated Obaseki, saying the Edo Governor’s assertion “does not reflect the true position of things.”
The APC governors’ statement had, among other things, offered excuses on behalf of the Federal Government and the CBN for the economy, while criticising Obasaki, who was elected on the platform of the PDP.
“Besides, there’s nothing exceptional in this current review of economic orthodoxy,” the APC governors said, in apparent support for the Central Bank of Nigeria.
“Yes, there are periods when the country experiences significant fiscal shocks in federation revenues.
“However, these shocks are offset by other savings serviced from the federation account, including distributions from the domestic excess crude proceeds and the foreign excess crude savings account.
“These payments started since 2008 when the country first experienced fiscal shocks from the fallouts of the global financial crisis of 2008-2009,” the APC governors had added.
Replying in a statement on Sunday, the Director General of the PDP Governors Forum, Cyril Maduabum, urged the APC-led Federal Government to plug financial leakages in the system.
The governors of the main opposition party also charged the APC administration to curb wasteful expenditure of billions of naira on projects that can be executed by the private sector and save a lot of money in the process.
They further urged the administration to rely less on the CBN in addressing monetary issues, saying that such measures exert undue pressure on the naira, with high rate of inflation as some of the consequences.
The statement by Maduabum said, “Inflation in Nigeria is currently at 18.2 %, the highest in recent years. We should all be concerned about how to find ways of stemming the tide.
“The PDP Governors Forum is alarmed at the partisan slant patriotic advice to the Federal Government by His Excellency, Governor Godwin Obaseki, on its monetary policies has assumed.
“It is unhelpful for the Progressive Governors Forum to join the fray in the manner it did by its recent statement attacking the bona fides of Governor Obaseki who merely warned the monetary authorities about the danger of uncontrolled use of Ways and Means, that is, the printing of Naira, to support government’s expenditure.”
The PDP Governors slammed the CBN governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele for appearing “vindictive and vengeful” with his call to state governments to pay back loans so far given to them by the Federal Government, in reaction to the revelation by Obaseki.
“Is the CBN trying to be vindictive and vengeful by recalling its loans to the states because of informed advice by a governor? It is unfortunate that governance has plummeted to this level.
“The Federal Government should plug financial leakages in the system and curb wasteful expenditure of billions of naira on projects that can be executed by the private sector and save a lot of money in the process,” the PDP forum added.