The Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA) has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to prosecute Dino Melaye, senator representing Kogi west, for breaching the bank’s rules at his mother’s burial in July.
A video of the event showed the senator spraying Yinka Ayefele, an artiste, with local and foreign currency has since gone viral.
In a petition sent to Godwin Emefiele, CBN governor, by Olanrewaju Suraju, HEDA’s chairman, said as an elected office holder, Melaye ought to show example and not break the law.
Suraju said Melaye’s action is a mockery of the country’s constitution.
“Critical review of the video that has gone viral over the social media, goes to the root of irony as men and women elected into power who ought to lead by example are the ones found disobeying and breaking the laws and this only goes to show the irony and the complete lack of integrity in our electoral process that we elect into power men and women who make laws and still find it difficult to abide by them,” he said.
“We believe this action of the lawmaker is an outright violation of and disregard for the currency and also show of bad precedence. Leaders ought to lead by example and in accordance with provisions of the law. The Act in reference is absolutely clear on the provisions as stated above.
“However, our organization believes in the presumption of innocence; hence the need for the petition and prompt action.
“This spraying of the currency amounts to tampering with the currency against Section 21 of the Central Bank Act, 2007 which is an offence punishable by law.”
Suraju said the petition is hinged on section 21(1) of the CBN act which states that; “A person who tampers with a coin or note issued by the Bank is guilty of an offence and shall on conviction be sentenced to imprisonment for a term not less than six months or to a fine not less than N50,000 or to both such fine and imprisonment.”
The CBN has, on several occasions, warned against abuse of the naira.