In a move that has stunned the financial sector, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has suspended Central Bank Governor Mr. Godwin Emefiele, CFR, from office with immediate effect. The suspension comes as part of an ongoing investigation into Emefiele’s office and planned reforms in the financial sector of the economy.
According to national media outlet NTA, Mr. Emefiele has been directed to immediately hand over the affairs of his office to the Deputy Governor (Operations Directorate), who will act as the Central Bank Governor pending the conclusion of the investigation and the reforms.
Less than two weeks ago, the current President assumed office after a controversial election in February 2023.
Mr. Emefiele has been serving as the CBN Governor since 2014 and has earned a reputation among Nigerians. However, for those involved in the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry, he’s known for inhibiting the growth of this field. In fact, he once issued a circular that prohibited financial institutions from facilitating cryptocurrency transactions in Nigeria and mandated banks to investigate and close any accounts associated with cryptocurrencies.
In May 2022, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, caused public outrage when news broke that he was seeking to replace President Muhammadu Buhari in the upcoming presidential election scheduled for 2023.
This move raised eyebrows as it was deemed unconstitutional due to his current position as the CBN governor. As a result, the Deputy Governor, Folashodun Adebisi Shonubi, will be serving as the acting governor of the Apex bank while Mr. Emefiele is investigated and the CBN is reformed.