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World Bank Nigeria

(Special Report) Adeosun: State of the economy one month after?

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The question of how is the Nigerian economy (monetary and fiscal policy activities), one month after the total out of sight of former Finance minister, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, has become necessary in view of latest economic indices in just one month of her resignation and leaving the country.
Business Hilights recalls that the Minister had succumbed to pressure emanating from revelations from Premium Times that she faked her NYSC Exemption Certificate by tendering his resignation from the government on Friday, September 14, 2018 and bolting away in less than 24 hours to London where she has bagged another choice job.
However, finance analysts say the major issue of concern is that a big economy like Nigeria is not where the chief finance officer will just leave and go out of sight, momentary explanations, and consultations and things are still expected to be at ease without shocks.
Findings and recent occurrences on the economy in the last one month after Adeosun’s ouster are mind boggling.
Key occurrences in the economy within the first one month of her resignation are as follows;
1, Sudden upturn leading to rising inflation from 11.23% to 11.28% in one month;
2, Collapse of 182 financial institutions including 152 Micro Finance Banks (MFBs);
3, Drop in rice harvest and export in non-oil exports;
4, IMF/WB warnings on jumping debt profile and impending shocks;
5, Shocking drop in foreign reserve by over $1bn;
6, Release of half payment of arrears of defunct Nigeria Airways staff with a haphazard documentary verification process which has already recorded one death and several collapse of aged former Nigeria Airways staff;

Overseeing Minister of Finance, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed

7, Nigeria assuming the strange status of poverty capital of the world;
8, Endless crisis on minimum wage for Nigerian workers;
9, Suspension of planned recapitalization of insurance companies;
10, Collapse of Skye Bank and CBN’s unilateral decision to inject N786bn public fund without any known comment or input from Stand-in Minister of Finance as shareholders funds stand eroded in the process;
11, Jumping fuel landing cost at ports and possible hike in fuel prices any time soon;
12, Heavy pressure from major marketers over mounting subsidy arrears and demand for payments;
13, Rising cyber threats on banks and CBN’s rush to begin redesign of cyber crimes/technology risks regulations.
In view of all the critical issues listed above, pundits are becoming worried on whether Adeosun handed over a well thought out self explanatory note while resigning and leaving the country.
They also argue that a fragile economy like that of Nigeria is not what a chief finance and mainly fiscal policy executive can just dump and go out of sight.
Besides, one of the most critical questions analysts are finding hard to answer is if a Zainab Ahmed (Stand-in Minister of Finance) can really manage an economy of the size of Nigeria with its associated volatility and most essentially, in an election year.

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