Deputy Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Bayo Adelabu, has given some insight on how the apex bank rescued Nigeria’s economy from sinking exchange rate, inflation and recession through the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan of President Muhammadu Buhari.
He spoke at the official commissioning of the CBN Medical Diagnostic and Treatment Centre in Ibadan, Oyo State capital, at the weekend.
Adelabu, who commended the Mr. Godwin Emefiele-led management of CBN, said, “about four years ago when we came in as a team, it was like heaven wanted to fall because everything was actually cracking on us. Every economic parameter we could point to as a measure of our economy welfare was declining, talking about inflation rate, exchange rate and foreign reserves.
“To cap it all, the country entered into recession, which means having negative growth in our GDP. What else gauge to measure our economy? But we did not relent, not just at the committee of governors, but at the management and staff of central bank level. Within ourselves, we believed there was nothing like impossibilities in our dictionary.
“We came up with policies, regulations, and ideas. Three years down the line, is the story not different? Everything reversed. It is not by coincidence or by accident but hard work, commitment, dedication, passion, belief in ourselves and by God’s grace, we were able to achieve all these.
“The inflation that was single digit in 2012/2013, rose to 18.5 per cent, more than double. The dollar exchange rate, which was N160 went as far as N520 to a dollar. The reserve that was over $40 billion came as low as $24 billion. We were having negative growth of GDP for four consecutive quarters, we recorded negative growth.
“But today, we have seen more than 600 bases drop or decline in inflation rate over an 18-month period. In most countries we have used as a case study, it takes at least 48 months before you can achieve a reversal of this very important economy parameter. Exchange rate defines general law in Nigeria, which says whatever goes up would never come down but that was not the case under Governor Emefiele.
“In the case of the dollar, we recorded drop of N165 in the exchange rate for the said period to stabilise our naira. It has been N360 to a dollar for the past 14 months.”