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Aremu Commends Senate On Emefiele, June 12



Emefiele Agbor

LOrganized labour has hailed what it called   “constructive collaboration and engagement” between President Muhammadu Buhari and the outgoing 8th National Assembly in ensuring the renewal of the appointment of Godwin Emefiele as Governor of the Central Bank as well as the prompt passage of  the Public Holiday Act Amendment Bill which  recognizes June 12 as the new Democracy Day. 

President Muhammadu Buhari had nominated Mr Godwin Emefiele for another 5-year tenure as CBN governor. On last Thursday at the plenary, the Senate passed the amendment in concurrence with the House of Representatives which approved the new date of June 12th as new Democracy Day earlier in December 2018, following the adoption of a report by Senator Ahmad Lawan, the Majority Leader, for the Senate to concur with the House.

The bill was passed almost one year after President Muhammadu Buhari announced that the date would replace May 29 for Nigerians to commemorate the return to the civilian government.

In a statement at the weekend in Lagos,  Comrade Issa Aremu NEC member, NLC and General Secretary of the Textile workers union (NUTGWN) observed that the bipartisan consensus on the twin issues of  Emefile’s reappointment and June 12th as the new Democracy Day should be sustained in the  resolution of urgent critical national issues such as re-industrialization, inadequate electricity supply, insecurity, human capital development, endemic infrastructural deficits and poverty eradication.

He said the remarkable consensus on the two issues was a “win-win” for Nigeria adding that “where there was the collective will”, there would be collective way for national development adding that  both arms of government deserve a praise for the deal. 

Comrade Aremu congratulated Dr Godwin Emefiele for what he called “earned and deserved” reappointment. According to the labour leader, it would go on record that  Emefiele as the CBN governor  commendably defended the autonomy of the CBN against the neoliberal forces that were pushing for unhelpful floating of Naira with the attendant unhelpful massive  devaluation in the wake of the 2017 recession. He said the relatively stable exchange rate of the recent times had allowed for national planning and business decisions needed for growth and development.

Comrade Aremu however noted  that the most significant achievement of the CBN Governor in the first tenure was  development financing which according to him “has revolutionized rice production and is rekindling the hope of revival of cotton production” through cheap long term credit and direct purchase and supply of inputs for farmers. He called for “deepening of financial inclusion, not less in the entire textile value chains within the context of the Cotton, Textile and Garment policy (CTG)” assuring of the partnership with labour unions in the textile sector to revive industry and create more jobs.  

On the June 12th, comrade Aremu said the new national consensus on the new Democracy Day has conclusively put a “welcome closure” to what he called “the tragedy” of the annulment of 1993 popular election won by Chief Moshood Abiola. He hailed  President Muhammadu Buhari for the declaration as well as honouring the acclaimed winner of the 1993 presidential election, with a posthumous conferment of the highest national award, Grand Commander of the Federal Republic.

The  labour leader who attributed the contemporary  election riggings, violence and political killings to the 1993 June 12th annulment said with the acknowledgement of the new Democracy Day, Nigeria has exorcised “the  specter of impunity, which repeatedly hunts Nigeria’s democratic process. “Almost three decades after monumental political injustice was inflicted on the country via an annulment of globally adjudged free and fair election; Nigeria can now move from countless political motions to  real political movement, in which rigging, ballot snatching and  annulment would be damned and votes would be conclusively counted” he wrote.

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