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CBN unsettling the systems with mass retrenchment exercisie—expert



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A financial analyst, Allwell Okoroafor has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to stop the mass sack exercise in the apex, saying the drive is unsettling the system.

On April 8, the CBN sacked five to eight directors. Those affected were in the Trade and Exchange Department, Securities Department, Development Finance Department, as well as Purchasing and Support Services Department, including Public Affairs Department, Nairametrics earlier reported.

The regulator equally retrenched 32 staff members the same day, striking fear in the staff.

So far, the apex bank has sacked 117 staff members across its 27 departments, multiple sources said.

“The system needs to settle, and the staff need to be focused. The CBN needs to concentrate on what is already an enormous task on its hands,” said one financial expert, who does not want his name in print.

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“You can’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. Halt the sacks and allow their system to cool. You need to re-assure the staff that you have their interests at heart. They can sabotage you and make it hard for you to reach your vision.”

Meanwhile, there is a major concern that the CBN is bloated and there are several staff members who are just redundant. The CBN has 27 departments and more than 10,000 staff members across the 36 states of the federation.

In 2022 alone, it spent N155.63 billion on staff allowances and N40.66 billion in staff loans, according to the bank’s 2016-2022 financial statements released in August 2023.

Economist and Chief Executive Officer of Centre for Promotion of Private Enterprise, Muda Yusuf, said though he does not have all the facts, there is a chance that people in power might have used the previous government to bring in their children into the apex bank.

“There could also be an issue of capacity gaps there. When there is too much nepotism in the system, capacity can be a problem. There have been cases where people who are being regulated are way ahead of their regulators. So, what is happening in the CBN could be a way to correct anomalies,” Yusuf said.