President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s moves to transfer the revenue derived from crude oil sales by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPCL) to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) continued despite the objections from northern elites.

This new development demands the NNPCL to remit receipts for crude oil sales to CBN through documentation and vetting. This makes NNPCL accountable to the federal government and the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Formerly, NNPCL had full control over crude oil sales only giving accounts to the federal government therefore, sending whatever amount it wished to the federal government for the crude oil sales. As for many, this arrangement was not transparent and accountable enough.

Olayemi Cardoso, the CBN governor stated that the collaboration with the Ministry of Finance is to ensure that foreign revenues are returned to the central bank.

“This reform is designed to streamline and unify multiple exchange rates fostering transparency and reducing opportunities for arbitrage. The resulting consistent and stable exchange rate will not only boost investor confidence, but will also attract foreign investments, elevating Nigeria’s appeal to global investors.

“We are implementing a comprehensive strategy to improve liquidity in our FX market in the short, medium and long terms. Our focus is addressing fundamental issues that have hindered the effective operation of our markets over years,” he noted.

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Some criticised the president’s decision, specifically the northerners who claimed that this decision would truncate policies that have been put in place. Senator Ali Ndume, one of the antagonists of this policy stated “The CBN is supposed to concentrate on policies that are more important to Nigeria now. Under this CBN governor, the dollar has gone up to N1,350 as at today; when he came in, it was not up to that, it was around N1,000 or less.

“What I want him (Cardoso) to do, or what Nigerians are expecting from him, is to concentrate on how to bring the value of the naira up to what Mr. President called one exchange rate. That is important. The primary responsibility of the CBN is not commercial; it is not a profit-making agency. So, that’s not an excuse. This decision would have to be weighed seriously. I am sure the president will look into it. I am very confident that we will reverse this unpopular decision,” Ndume stated.

The move to centralize control over crude oil revenue in the CBN is seen as a bold step towards curbing financial mismanagement, corruption and ensuring transparency and accountability in the economy.

Some citizens have expressed their opinions via their X handle. “NNPC should not be allowed to sell and tender receipts, they should only be concerned with production while CBN handles sales. With this, let us at least witness a reduction in corruption and rise of naira,” a tweep stated.

Another tweep by the name Explorer said. “If this will move our economy forward, I’m in full support.”