Hello Mr. Iloegbunam – Ejike Okpa

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Hello Mr. Iloegbunam

After reading what read like defense of Madam Okonjo-Iweala over Charles Soludo, published in Vanguard, I am amazed at what Nigerians put forth and out to assign value while side stepping the issues, of a country whose trajectory/tangent is headed to demise by their own doing. Dressing a pig in a tuxedo, bow tie to match and blazing red lips stick, does not change the fact it is a pig after all. Hope you grasp the import of such statement.

It does seem typical of Anambra folks, who have dislike for themselves??? [Alex Ekwueme could not stand Emeka Ojukwu, Ojukwu betrayed Pius Okadigbo who fought for his pardon, and many others] that you have ax to grind with Soludo. I am assuming that because of your lengthy response – BLAND though, with lousy imports to assail Soludo, looks to me you are looking for a job or adulation by the present administration??

Now that you are no longer a Chief of Staff, what are you doing? What administration were you Chief of Staff? Don’t tell me Ngige or the Uli man Mbadinuju, elected in 1999, by machinations of Emeka Offor and high school drop-out Christian Uba? It amazes me in a state that claims to have the big wigs even if they are airheads – smartest Igbos to boot, people like Emeka Offor and Christian Uba, once directed what happened in Anambra State. WOW, I often say when I remember that uncharitable episode laden with odd fellows. Speaking of Anambra state, what does one expect?

In Nigeria, where there is hardly ‘after-market value’, of government officials except perennial masquerading for next windfall of appointment, it is obvious you are culling favor from Madam Okonjo-Iweala or her cohorts. I am neither a fan of Soludo nor Iweala. It is so obvious Nigeria has systemic problems and no matter the dance in the square with attendant hi-5ing, the world’s most populous black nation is a doormat laden with doctors and doctorates, yet the country gets sicker and is sickened.

In Anmabra state despite its dubious claim by her indigenes as the smartest Igbos, it is the most dysfunctional state in Igboland whereby money bags and windbags fly high uncoordinated. If charity is expected to take roots at home, how come Anambra state in nearly 25-years of its existence, it’s still a lousy and physically depressing state? Peter Obi, her former Governor, an ‘Ochanja market Governor’, was all air, ran the state like a mafia fiefdom.

In any event, I was taken aback by your undue defense of a broken system especially Nigeria ‘over-the-counter-deposit’ acceptance banking institutions ran like petty cash operations. If you understand banking and the associated regulatory agencies to bolster its soundness, it is the responsibility of a deposit insurance agency, such as NDIC, that ought to step up and close and or shut down any ailing bank. Except in the case where no such institution exists, does a central bank steps up. Typically, Central banks are MICRO in their roles while a deposit insurance agency is MACRO, dealing with stress tests and sensitive assessment to make sure bank failures are minimized and curtailed.

But in Nigeria muddled policy environment where politics determines what happens instead of sound policy pursuits, it is no wonder the criss-crossing and cross-firing – apportioning blames to the wrong quarters is part of the dysfunction, which in your response was heightened to nauseating level. To Soludo’s credit not that I care for him, he tried to recapitalize the banks, which he did although his approach was mechanical with alleged ambushing/extortion benefits that saw banks doling out alleged N300m to ensure he overlooked their situation. One of the dailies in Nigeria reported on this development.

I understand functions of insurance deposit institutions because I worked for US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. US FDIC closes ailing and failing banks and not US Federal Reserve, an equivalent institution to a central bank with wide variance. US Federal Reserve bank system is a non-profit institution not owned by US government even though the president appoints the chair of the system. But in a systemic default country like Nigeria where as much as they try to copy and paste, they are challenged to uphold the basic values of a simple task, it is no surprise the outcome is depressingly sad.

Marooned by titles and unshakable inefficiencies anchored on outdated administrative structure, coupled with hard to walk from culture of going between modern day practices and traditional ties – osculating in wild and wide pendulum swings, it is reason nothing works in Nigeria. Again, I expect no comeback comments from you. In the meantime, read a published piece by me regarding the feud between Soludio versus Okonjo-Iweala, by African Executive.

Neither Soludo nor Okonjo-Iweala, are stars even when the most intense light is shone on either one. Given their performances, they are dim wits on kerosene lamp post. Sorry, it is what it is.


This link prompted my comments – http://transparencyng.com/…/11136-soludo-vs-iweala-between-….
This is a case of kettle calling a cooking pot over charcoal stove black or vice versa. Since 1999, when President Obasanjo, recruited Mrs. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Charles Soludo, Magnus Kpakol; Charles and Magnus serving as Economic Advisers at some point, and with Madam Okonjo-Iweala being promoted as a 'messiah' of some sort, given her World Bank experience, Nigeria economic wellbeing has suffered and keep tanking.
The suffering of Nigerians and attendant devaluation of Naira are very evident. President Jonathan mesmerized and intimidated by those in his administration who hold PhD, and lacking the fortitude to be critical of certain happenings under his watch, has allowed malfeasance in the economy go unchallenged. No genius is needed to see the deplorable condition of Nigeria economy especially since the advent of the new political dispensation – 1999.
Any nation that loses the principal value of its savings cannot be said or seen as doing well. In 1999, One Million Naira had an equivalent value of $11,000. Today, One Million Naira is mere $4,500. Computing the value loss indicates more than 200%. Assuming one had put aside One Million Naira in 1999 in a Fixed Deposit earning or attracting annual saving interest rate of 5%, in 16 years hence, the resulting value is less than what the principal savings amount was.
Here is the math: In 16yrs, the resulting amount is N1,936,000 – compounding interest rate, accounting for inflation and various adjusted inter-bank rates by CBN during this period. When N1,936,000 is converted at current buy-back rate N205 to the Dollar, it is $9,444, a loss of $1,556 or nearly 14%, from original savings amount.
While an argument can be made that $11,000 invested in some other aspects of Nigeria could have tripled and or quadrupled the amount invested, such is like gambling. Savings is considered a safe investment and true measure of stability of an economy. But in this case, Nigeria savings account holders have lost tremendously.
Erosion of value triggers loss of confidence in an economy and in turn, flight of capital. Madam Okonjo-Iweala cannot explain away the devaluation, and this comes at the heels of Nigeria debts being forgiven, suspended or waived, an exercise that could/should have strengthened the Naira and set it on a strong rebound. With all the debt forgiveness, Naira could not rebound and even when oil traded at three digits, there were no sparks and or spikes in indices used to measure the wellbeing of an economy. It is down-hill for Nigeria.
Even as Madam Okonjo-Iweala, stepped forward on 'fixing' Nigeria economy, combining her roles as Finance Minister and Coordinating Minister for Economy and her acclaimed World Bank fame, coupled with Nigeria debt forgiveness, she has not been able to arrest the slide of the Naira against any currency. Instead, in her voo-doo machinations and impressing naive Nigeria leadership, she sought to rebase Nigeria economy. Rebasing Nigeria economy which dubiously placed her as the largest economy in Africa, attracting ovation from uninformed Nigerians – given to quantity but no quality, while the fundamentals of the economy has rested on quicksand.
Very well: Only in her mind and that of ‘beer parlor cheers and chants’.
Loss of savings value is an undisputable measure of any economy not doing well. So no matter how Madam Okonoj-Iweala slices it and may counter Mr. Soludo, it is evident all of them plus former CBN Governor now Emir of Kano – Mr. Sanusi Lamido, could not arrest the slide of the Naira. And since President Jonathan is not holding anyone accountable, it is a dance in the square.
It is time to clear and clean the stable to try new hands. Thus far, the horses have not run good races. It is time for Positive Change.
Between Buhari and Jonathan, it is a choice of a pillar and or a post, either choice is hard and Nigeria is in for hard times except the new leadership that emerges after the election makes drastic changes on how Nigeria economy is managed going forward.

Just my 2 kobo enabled by my 2 cents.


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