The Federal Government announced the suspension (read ‘sack’) of Mallam Lamido Sanusi earlier today. The CBN Governor and the entire country was taken by the surprise move. It was expected that the Presidency would allow Mallam Sanusi end his tenure which comes to a close in less than 2 months. However there was no such luck as President Goodluck Jonathan seemed determined to deal with the CBN governor.
The official reason for his suspension as stated in the official letter signed by Anyim Pius Anyim and dated 19th February 2014 was “financial recklessness” and “unprofessional conduct”.
The letter listed some unlawful and indefensible expenditures. The unlawful expenditures referred to intervention projects and programmes embarked upon by the bank, whilst the “indefensible expenditures” were listed in the letter verbatim as:
- N3.086 billion on promotional activities in 2012 (up from N1.084 billion in 2011). The bank spent this sum when it is not in competition with any other institution in Nigeria.
- The CBN claimed to have expended N20.202 billion on ‘Legal and Professional Fees’ in 2011, beyond all reasonable standards of prudence and accountability.
- Between expenses on ‘Private Guards’ and ‘Lunch for Policemen’, the CBN claimed to have spent N1.257 billion in 2012
The letter also stated that the CBN claimed to have paid N38.233 billion to the Nigerian Security, Printing and Minting Company Limited in 2011, however it said “paradoxically the same NSPMC reported a total revenue of N29.37 billion for all its transactions with all clients including the CBN.
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