Fuel, Currency Crisis: All Buck Stops On Buhari’s Table, By Tunde Abatan

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Fuel, Currency Crisis: All Buck Stops On Buhari’s Table, By Tunde Abatan
At every point in time of a nation’s crisis, a leader’s attitude and the way they address it, determines how the nation will fare in solving the problem and by extension the leader’s place in history.
Except, politicians like former Vice President Abubakar Atiku and Peter Obi of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP and Labour Party, LP respectively who have chosen to politicise the glaring suffering of the people by abandoning their opposition role but took sides with both the Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele and President Muhammadu Buhari not to lessen the human suffering their ill thought policy has inflicted on the citizens, all other sectors  and stakeholders have taken side with the people.
While both Atiku and his other bed fellow Obi, curiously assume the position of defenders of governments policies and wanted the citizens to hide their pains and watch their businesses collapse, both Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, candidate of the ruling All People’s Congress, APC and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila valiantly cast partisanship aside and cried out.
That Gbajabiamila can defy odds and promised to reconvene a House in recess shows sympathy with the masses of the people whose businesses and source of living has gone under.
What of the long queues of farmished citizens across the country who had money but cannot withdraw and who have goods but cannot sell, all because of a policy whose conception and execution fall short of reason and logic few months to a transitory election.
Indeed, that the Supreme Court, the highest court of the land can deliver a judgement asking CBN to allow both currency to operate is fundamental while the Friday decision of the National Council of states-made up of former heads of state and Presidents asking the CBN and FG to have a rethink shows statesmanship and humanity expected of leaders at critical junctions of a nations crisis.
What is more, Saturdays decision by the Nigeria Governors Forum made up of 36 state governors condemning the slow pace of implementation of Supreme court’s ruling to allow both currency exists side by side until enough currency is churned out is a manifestation of humanity.
Humanity is neither borne out of politriks of partisanship neither is it reasonable for a government intent on succeeding itself to brazenly affront the citizens which elected it into power.
If it is true that the CBN only printed N300 billion naira to retrieve the N2.7trillion in circulation, does it mean that the remaining N2.4trillion is in the pockets of the rich which both Emefiele and President Buhari’s redesign policy is targeted at.
Now that few months into the beginning of the exercise larger majority of the downtrodden traders, peasants, artisans, workers and the others are yet to exchange their money, it then means that the percentage printed has ended up in the pockets of the rich and affluent the policy is targeted at according to the duo.
How come the new currencies has found it’s way into the hands of the affluent who flaunt it at parties while from the comfort of their homes, they got cash which has become elusive to the downtrodden on the street.
Assuming that the overall objective of the policy is to protect the poor, to what extent has the poor being protected when queues mount up in front of Automated Machines, ATM that failed to dispense new cash?
How many bank branches has the CBN reached at the ratio of 4.3 branches to 100,000 people in Nigeria.
As we write, there are many local government areas in both the North and Southern parts of the country that has no bank branches while other means of withdrawing cash like Point of Sales, POS machines could not function due to our epileptic communication network .
Today, most poor citizens had their money trapped on line due to network issues as the transfer of money has overstretched the capacity of the communication network since cash refused to come from ATM machines including those domiciled in cities like Lagos and other areas of the country.
In a situation like this, the only reasonable thing for a sensitive government to do is to admit failure of it’s project and return the country to status quo until it could guarantee enough new notes.
The bulk of this definitely stop at the table of President Buhari who was elected to put smiles on the faces of Nigerians and not Emefiele who is a beneficiary of Buhari’s sole authority.
Inefficiency of Emefiele should not be passed to Nigerians but solely borne by President Buhari who never consulted Nigerians before Emefiele’s appointment.
Beside the failed project of the CBN, the President also has to carry the blame for the fuel scarcity which has inflicted more pains on the citizenry who have to pay more for the fuel that has disappeared.
Granting that removal of subsidy is long overdue, using punishment with long queues in the era on naira scarcity is double punishment for a citizen whose life has been devalued several times since Emefiele came on board as CBN governor.
In a country where life has become so short and brutish as a result of insecurity, life has lost fervour and meaning .
Yet, Buhari appointed the sole administrators of his newly formed Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC which has failed to justify reason for Change it was created to bring into management of nations oil resources .
Must removal of subsidies be effected with avoidable punishment for the citizenry?
Nigerians entrusted Buhari  with their mandate and it is his own cross to resolve the failure of the project he initiated with Emefiele and not to throw up his hands after all he is immune from the cash squeeze.
While Emefiele, has his  place in the history of banking operations in the country, history will focus more on President Buhari who refused to rise up to demand of statesmanship by sorting himself and the hapless citizens out of Emefiele’s I’ll motivated currency design project.
Afterall, President Buhari has enough ground for a doctrine of necessity to terminate Emefiele’s appointment especially with the support of his party men, National assembly, Council of state and the custodian of the nations law  which the Supreme Court  represents.
To fail to act to reduce the sufferings of the masses across the length and breadth of Nigeria is to fold his hands while Rome burns.
If he does so ,he will  probably pull the roof of the nation down on his head and that of his party and also consign himself to the harsh judgement of History few months to the end of his tenure.
Time will tell.