By Kingsley Okoye
Abuja – The Senate on Tuesday at plenary, passed for second reading, a bill to amend the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Act.
Leading debate on the general principles of the bill, its sponsor, Sen. Sadiq Umar (APC-Kwara), said the bill was to enable the appointment of a person other than the Governor as Chairman of the Board of CBN.
He said the bill was also designed to divest the powers of the board on determining and fixing salaries and allowances of its members.
According to him, the bill if passed, will be used to determine consideration and approval of the annual budget of the CBN.
Suleiman said the envisaged new chairman of the proposed board of the CBN, would have powers to determine salaries and allowances of members, while the Governor focused on administrative duties of the bank.
In her contribution, Sen. Betty Apiafi (PDP-Rivers), called for a holistic amendment of the CBN Act, adding that the CBN governor went out of his way to indicate interest to participate in politics while in office.
She said the development was not the trend in the world, given that election materials were kept in CBN.
Senators Enyinnaya Abaribe (APGA- Abia), James Manager (PDP-Delta), Orji-Kalu (APC-Abia) kicked against the hasty amendments to the bill, while Sen. Barau Jubril (APC-Kano), supported the bill in his submission.
President of Senate, Ahmad Lawan, however, cautioned senators to focus on the proposed amendment rather than deliberating on alleged attempt by the CBN governor to contest as that wasn’t part of the general principles of the bill.
Lawan, thereafter, put the passing of the bill for second reading to a voice vote and senators voted unanimously for its passage.(NAN)