An Abuja-based lawyer, Jude A. Daniel, has said that the calls for President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in monetary policy is illegal.
Daniel also said the monetary policy being under the exclusive powers of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) robbed the Supreme Court the original jurisdiction to entertain disputes arising from such.
He said the provisions of Sections 17 and 19 of the CBN Act 2007 gave the bank’s board exclusive prerogative to determine the legal tender to issue, while the president merely approved.
He said, “The new policy having been approved, Nigeria is already in a new monetary era and the president or even the next president cannot change it except on recommendations of the CBN’s board.”
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He noted that Section 1(3) of the CBN granted the bank “absolute independence” on currency matters, adding that Section 251(1)(d) of the Nigerian constitution granted the Federal High Court exclusive jurisdiction on CBN matters as they related to banking, foreign exchange, coinage, legal tender, bills of exchange, letters of credit, promissory notes and other fiscal measures.
He further said, “The deliberate exclusion of CBN in the case does not change the provision of the constitution, and that explains why CBN cannot be faulted for disregarding the interim order (now elapsed) or allow itself to be treated as a mere appendage of the federal government.”