Caption: Emefiele during a Friday, April 22, 2016 assessment tour of a rice producing community in Kebbi State under the CBN-initiated Anchor Borrowers’ Programme, accompanied by then Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh and the Kebbi State Governor, Alhaji Atiku Bagudu.
Ahead of next year’s presidential race, three different groups- Rice Farmers Association of Nigeria, Friends of Emefiele and Emefiele Support Group, have reportedly purchased the All Progressives Congress (APC) Expression of Interest and Nomination form for the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, at the cost of N100m on Thursday.
Although the CBN governor has not officially indicated any interest in running for the presidency, and subsequently has not resigned his position as expected under the latest amendment to the Electoral Act, the groups, according to a statement, described him as the only responsible and responsive person capable of succeeding incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari at the 2023 general election.
It is not also clear whether a non-member of the political party can aspire to run for elective office, or whether a waiver is envisaged, or even possible for him.
Emefiele has insisted that he remains focused on strengthening the nation’s economy, the groups said Nigeria is passing through a lot of economic and security challenges, following which the parties and electorates must consider experience, dynamism, energy, equity and fairness in the choice of who becomes the country’s next President.
Giving reasons for their choice of Emefiele, the groups said the CBN governor’s tenure as head of the Nigeran apex bank, has shown capacity, focus, and courage, while working with the president’s economic team to keep the nation’s economy away from recession and outright collapse.