Monday, 26 June 2017

CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA EXPLAINS WHY IT CANNOT DEVALUE THE NAIRA

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has given explana­tions why it would not suc­cumb to prehttp://eu2.madsone.com/ad/100171498482527000130/752f2bbe5321902e/mads.gifssure to further devalue or float the Naira. CBN Acting Director, Public Communications, Mr. Isaac Okora­for, gave the explanations in Umua­hia, Abia State during a sensitiza­tion forum on CBN intervention programmes for young entrepre­neurs, farmers, traders, cooperative societies,and young school leavers.

He said CBN would not devalue the Naira as that would escalate in­flation and worsen the economic sit­uation in the country. Okorafor said CBN had the con­stitutional mandate to regulate the currency and prevent any econom­ic situation that would expose Nige­rians to hardship.

According to him, those clamour­ing for the Naira to be devalued are not patriotic but only after their in­terests and that of their foreign part­ners. He insisted that the CBN would continue to stabilise the Naira and resist any policy that would make it go beyond the current exchange rate of less than N400 per US Dollar.

“We can’t float the Naira because it will escalate inflation. We can’t kill our people by pleasing foreigners. CBN has the responsibility to pro­tect our people economically and we won’t introduce a policy that will in­flict hardship on the people,” he said.

He called on Nigerians to patron­ise locally- made products and stop their penchant for foreign goods as a quick way to stimulate the econ­omy and exit the current econom­ic recession. “We must eat what we produce and produce what we eat,” he said, regretting that a lot of Nigerians still prefer imported products to their lo­cal counterparts, an attitude he said was the reason the Nigeria economy had continued to nose-dive.

He, however, commended the ef­forts of some Nigerians and state governments who had keyed into the various CBN interventions es­pecially in the sectors of agriculture and Small and Medium Enterpris­es (SMEs) and also applauded rice farmers in Kebbi State who he said had justified CBN’s agric inter­vention as the state is now the high­est rice producer in Nigeria.

He said, “Today in Kebbi State we have achieved urban - rural migration because people now go back to the villages to cultivate rice. Rice farm­ers who keyed into our programme have all become millionaires. They got greater harvests more than an­ticipated because we provided them with improved seedlings.”

He therefore, enjoined farmers, entrepreneurs and owners of SMEs to take advantage of the various CBN interventions in different sectors and better their living conditions and also create more jobs. He noted that CBN chose to intervene in real sectors such as agriculture, and SMEs because of their quick effect in stimulating the economy.

Okorafor expressed satisfaction over the enthusiasm of Abia entre­preneurs especially Aba artisans to key into the CBN programmes, say­ing that the apex bank is willing to support the ingenuity of Abia arti­sans. He equally commended the Abia State Government for paying its counterpart fund in one of the inter­vention schemes, hinting that Abia has accessed over N2 billion in CBN programmes.

In her remarks, CBN Branch Manager in Abia State, Mrs. Veron­ica Akpan said over 10,000 farmers in the state had accessed the CBN ag­ric credit scheme, adding that over N6.8 billion loan had been given out by banks in Abia to their customers based on various CBN packages. (Authority)