Sanusi And His Banks Without Dollars And New Notes.
In the Nigerian banking industry today, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, the prince of Kano Emirate heading the Central bank of Nigeria has many enemies and very few friends. At the acme of the industry, he probably has no friends at all. The Cecilia Ibrus and the Akingbolas of the banking industry will not forget him in a hurry.
For sure he has made his mark as Nigerias exchequer. He collapsed the banks to manageable sizes and then followed with policies to make sure they tow the line making them healthier and stronger. His cashless economy joker can only come from a sharp mind, so one is not surprised he had won laurels for himself and the country. He spoke truth to Aso Rock warning them about the precarious state of the economy and told us the legislators are
termites devouring 25% of our recurrent budget. Despite opposition, he stood his ground on Islamic banking.
It takes a bold man to do all this and more which make you remember his equally bold friends and brothers, “giant” El-Rufai, the earth while FCT minister who bulldozed even buildings belonging to the high and mighty and the diamond-hard slim Mallam Ribadu, the former czar at EFCC.
At times, the trio makes one ponder whether there is a correlation between boldness and size. Because, when it comes to being bold, very few can hold a candle to the faces of these three from Arewa land. Our sociologist may one day want to find out, whether boldness is inversely proportional to size .
However there is a big snag with Sanusi’s bank reformation. It is a big red stain right at the center of his white babanriga of bank transformation. Unfortunately, the best dry cleaner in the land cannot help remove this stain, only Sanusi can.
This writer was galled and shocked when he was told he could not access #1000 BTA for his wife yesterday in one of the biggest banks in Ibadan. The bankers directed him to Sabo, a shouting distance to the bank.
Now, we all know you will get new notes at the motor parks but never knew banks cannot access foreign currencies again. What do they do with their dollar allocation from the CBN?
Some people claim Lamido is using foreign exchange and new notes to empower his people economically but I ask, how ? When dollars are allocated to the banks, does Sanusi recall it from the banks? Would the banks say CBN do not give them new notes? The way the bankers loathe this man, they would have shouted if he hadanks with foreign exchange and new notes. I say the bankers are the problem here.
Even the, the buck stops on Sanusi’s table as the numero uno of our financial system. Exchanging #2500 old notes for #2000 mint notes does no credit to Sanusi’s tenure as CBN boss and damages the country’s image. It does not happen anywhere else. It is even worse when you cannot access dollars in banking halls but in Sabo in Ibadan or Martins street in Lagos.
Sanusi should fall back on his bag of tricks and get the dollars and new notes back to the banking halls. For a start, he can send the law after the hawkers and then formulate policies to police the bankers.
If by 2014, when his tenure expires, our new notes and dollars are still on the streets rather than being in the banking halls, then the theory that Sanusi is empowering his people at our expense will be valid. And it will be a big stain on his white babanriga of banking reformation.