The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has issued a 14-day ultimatum to Godwin Emefiele, the governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), to provide information on the staffer of the apex bank alleged to have links with the Boko Haram sect.
Stephen Davis, an Australian cleric who tried to negotiate the release of the abducted Chibok girls, had alleged that a senior staff of the bank is sympathetic to the cause of Boko Haram.
And in a letter sent to CBN on Monday, SERAP threatened that if by the expiration of the ultimatum, no effort is made to grant its request , it would invoke all means within its legal authority to compel the leadership of CBN to act.
“Given the involvement of the CBN in this matter and the fact that you are the governor of the bank, we believe that you will be able to use your position and leadership to provide appropriate records and information on what exactly happened,” SERAP said in a statement signed by Adetokunbo Mumuni, its executive director.
“We urge you to provide information about the persons involved in alleged money laundering through the Central Bank of Nigeria to fund the activities of Boko Haram, which have contributed to the unlawful killings of innocent Nigerians and destruction of property.”
“SERAP is concerned about the damaging allegation, especially given that the CBN as a regulatory body has a responsibility under the UN Convention against corruption and other national laws to prevent money laundering in banks, and to ensure that its systems are transparent and accountable to the Nigerian people.”
It said the bank risks losing public trust if it fails to state its own side of the allegation.
“It is necessary to provide clarity as to what exactly happened through the CBN if the bank is to continue to play a leadership role in the fight against corruption and money
“Providing the information would also help to ensure full accountability for those involved in international crimes, and contribute to the process of providing effective remedies for victims.”
“The information being requested does not come within the purview of the types of information exempted from disclosure by the provisions of the FOI Act. The information requested for, apart from not being exempted from disclosure under the FOI Act, bothers on an issue of national interest, public peace and concern, interest of human rights, social justice, good governance, transparency and accountability.”