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Step Down Now, Buhari Orders Emefiele, Other Appointees Seeking To Contest 2023 Elections

President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered the resignation of Godwin Emefiele, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and other political appointees seeking to contest the 2023 elections.

The order was given in a circular issued by Boss Mustapha, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) titled, ‘Ministers, heads of government agencies, ambassadors and other appointees with political ambitions to resign.’

The circular in which the CBN Governor was copied reads: “Mr. President has observed and noted the expression of interest and intention by some members of the Federal Executive Council, heads of extra-ministerial departments, agencies, parastatals of government, ambassadors and other political office holders to contest the upcoming presidential, gubernatorial, national and state assemblies’ elections.

“Consequently, Mr. President has directed that the affected office holders aspiring to run for various offices in the 2023 general election, should tender their resignation on or before Monday, the 16th of May, 2022.

“For the avoidance of doubt, this directive affects all ministers, heads and members of extra-ministerial departments, agencies and parastatals of government, ambassadors, as well as other political appointees who desire to contest for elective offices.

“For smooth running of the machinery of government and our foreign missions, affected ministers are to hand over to ministers of state where they exist or to the permanent secretary, where there is no minister of state.

“Ambassadors shall hand over to their deputy heads of mission or the most senior foreign service officer in line with established practices.

“Similarly, heads of extra-ministerial departments, agencies and parastatals are to hand over to the most senior director/officer as may be peculiar to the organisation, in line with the service wide Circular No. SGF.50/S. Il/C.2/268 of 4th December, 2017.

“The contents of this circular and the incidental directives take effect immediately.”

Emefiele had been under pressure since some groups purchased the 2023 Presidential forms of the ruling All Progressives Congress for him.

Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State had asked the president to fire him if he failed to step down,

The opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) also demanded his arrest over his interest in the 2023 elections.

On Wednesday, three of the nine ministers seeking to contest the 2023 elections quit the cabinet after the President directed that they leave office if they are interested in any elective position.

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