…Protest Hits Abuja, as Groups Warn against Arrest, Prosecution
Civil Society Organizations, CSOs, under the aegis of the Coalition of Civil Society Organisation and Youth Group, CCSGYG, yesterday, in a massive protest in Abuja, warned the Department of State Security Service, DSS, against a plot to arrest and detain the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele over some trump-up charges.
The Department of State Services DSS had on Tuesday approached an Abuja Federal High court seeking relief to arrest and detain the apex bank czar over alleged sponsorship of terrorism and other criminal charges.
However, the Court had declined the relief sought by the DSS directing it to secure the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari over the arrest.
Speaking during a rally held in Abuja, the President of the coalition, Bassey Etuk Williams and Secretary, Abubakar Ibrahim, respectively insisted that the Apex Bank’s Governor is not a terrorist as alleged. adding that the allegations were frivolous, baseless and unfounded.
The Civil Society groups also alleged that certain politicians are behind the trial of Mr Emefiele they opined that the recent CBN reforms would expose their corrupt escapades.
They expressed their displeasure over politicians’ manipulation of a noble organisation such as the DSS to trump up alleged unfounded charges against Emefiele who, they claimed, has done well to keep the economy afloat by revamping various sectors of the economy.
According to Williams, it is a shame to mention that Emefiele is sponsoring terrorism and those alleging that have no evidence to prove it, only to engage the DSS unprofessionally on what the Service itself cannot substantiate.
He said “Our attention was once again drawn to the recent motion Ex parte brought before a Federal High Court in Abuja by men of DSS where-in they sought relief to arrest and detain the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele based on trump-up charges of financing terrorism, economic crime and crime of national security.
“This motion was surprisingly done without concrete evidence to prove the frivolous allegations against the workaholic CBN Governor that the country can’t forget easily based on his several positive impactful economic and monetary policies approved by President Muhammadu Buhari for implementation.
“We are surprised to note the division that exists among top government officials of this regime. While the CBN Governor was in the faraway US in the entourage of President Buhari, another arm is seeking his arrest back home on trump-up charges without the consent of the President.
“The questions that beg for an answer is, who gave such a directive, is Mr President aware of this allegation before moving in to effect arrest via a court order? On whose interest is the DSS working?
“The Civil society movement has great respect for the DG DSS who we know as a fine gentleman but we feel that the trumped-up charges are a product of unfounded petitions generated by unscrupulous politicians whose fraudulent activities have been caught short by the wonderful and brilliant policies of the central bank governor.
“We wonder why they left their main mandate and allowed the troubled political class to influence their professional ethics.
“The coalition is surprised at the high level of a plot to frame the CBN Governor at this time. There has been a coordinated attempt to rubbish him, as we all note that this started via one Hon. Kazaure when he went about screaming missing N89 trillion stamp duty money was traceable to the same man, even though the Presidency has come out to disown the said committee the political class didn’t rest as they moved again using the men of DSS.
“We are shocked that this can happen even while he was away with President Buhari. The question is why did they allow someone allegedly financing terrorism to be on the delegation of Mr President?
“The CBN Governor has served diligently for seven years and the DSS within this period didn’t discover this until the recently introduced monetary policy, a policy that majorly affects most of our political class”.
…Division Among Top Govt Officials Surprising– Coalition President
The coalition also pointed out that: “This is an affront on the government of President Buhari and we implore the Presidency to get to the root of the move aimed to further ridicule and bring to disrepute the office of the President.”
He continued, “The Coalition likened the situation as when you fight corruption, definitely it will fight back as we can see over this period how Godwin Emefiele has been in the eye of the storm for trying to further salvage our economy and standardized our Naira notes via the introduction of new notes duly approved by President Buhari.
“We call on the naysayers to allow him to concentrate on his job and demand that all these trump-up charges should be dropped against him in moving the nation forward.
“Despite these allegations, he was still cleared to travel with Mr President, this further shows the secret plot to want to indict him to remove him from the office which informs why they approached court without the knowledge of the President.”
However, the Coalition warned that it would stand aloof and allow certain security agencies to rubbish Emefiele against policies approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“This flip-flop in government activities must stop now. We as a group, hereby reiterate our unalloyed support for President Muhammadu Buhari and CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele while urging the CBN Governor to further the implementation of his policies aimed at further combating inflation.
“While we warn the detractors and naysayers to allow him to deliver on his mandate, the era of cash stuffing at home has gone and won’t come back again.
“We won’t be deterred from taking further actions if this blackmail to remove him from office does not stop now”, they added.