A powerful lobby is currently pushing for the return of Sanusi Lamido Sanusi as governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, as the shape of Tinubu’s presidency begins to emerge.
Sanusi, whose forte is risk management in banking, enjoys the blessing of Governor Nasiru El Rufai of Kaduna State who has the ears of the President-elect, Bola Tinubu.
As CBN governor between 2009 and 2014, Sanusi’s strong, independent leadership of the apex bank ensured relative stability of the financial market, especially after the turbulence of the global financial crisis of 2008/2009.
Tinubu, a seasoned accountant, is said to be predisposed to a new monetary management template, synergized with sound fiscal policy to immediately revitalize the national economy on the assumption of office on May 29.
Sanusi is seen as a credible technocrat with a strong character to sanitize the banking/financial sector.
”The Nigerian economy is estimated to have lost N20trillion between January and March 2023, according to the Centre for the Promotion of Private Enterprise, a think tank, by way of deceleration of economic activities, crippling of trading activities, stifling of the informal economy, contraction of the agricultural sector, and the paralysis of the rural economy,” a source said.
Recall that Sanusi was suspended by the governor of President Goodluck Jonathan president after he caused shockwaves by alleging that $20bn (£12bn) in oil revenue had gone missing.
He had told a senate committee that of the $67bn of oil sold between January 2012 and July 2013, $20bn had not been accounted for.
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, while saying the claim was unsubstantiated, insisted the allegations showed “little understanding of the technicalities of the oil industry”.
Mr Sanusi is widely respected after undertaking reforms to the banking sector after his appointment in 2009 and was named central bank governor of the year for 2010 by Banker magazine.
He vowed to challenge his suspension in order to preserve the central bank’s independence.