Former President Muhammadu Buhari has clarified why he refrained from dismissing Godwin Emefiele, the former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, amidst rumours of Emefiele’s presidential aspirations during the 2023 elections. Buhari’s decision was based on insufficient concrete evidence supporting these speculations. This revelation is part of a memoir titled ‘Working with Buhari: Reflections of a Special Adviser, Media and Publicity (2015 – 2023)’, authored by his former Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, and unveiled in Abuja.
In the memoir, Buhari is quoted expressing his reluctance to act without solid proof, stating, “When he (Emefiele) was linked with the campaign for the 2023 presidency, I did not ask him because he told nobody he was getting involved. Otherwise, I would have removed him and told the nation why.” Buhari emphasized the importance of fairness and avoiding unjust punishment, noting the long-term impact such actions could have on a person’s life and career.
Buhari also reflected on the principles of fairness and justice, considering how he would want to be treated by his successor. He highlighted the significance of maintaining morale among those serving with him and the impact of his decisions on his family and friends.
During the book’s unveiling, President Bola Tinubu remarked on Buhari’s non-interference in his administration since leaving office in 2023. On May 7, 2022, Emefiele publicly contemplated running for the All Progressives Congress presidential ticket, acknowledging the financial implications of such a decision. This followed the purchase of the N100m nomination and expression of interest forms on his behalf by a group of farmers and business people, urging him to contest for President.
The decision by former President Muhammadu Buhari to not dismiss Godwin Emefiele, the ex-CBN governor, over unconfirmed presidential ambitions speaks volumes about the delicate balance between rumour and evidence in political decision-making. Buhari’s approach, as revealed in his former adviser’s memoir, underscores a commitment to fairness and justice, which are crucial in governance.
Buhari’s stance reminds us of the importance of substantiated evidence before taking consequential actions in a political landscape often riddled with speculation and unverified claims. It’s a lesson in restraint and ethical leadership, highlighting the potential harm that hasty decisions based on rumours can cause to individuals and institutions.
Buhari’s reflection on the impact of his decisions on his team’s morale and the long-term effects on individuals’ lives is a testament to his thoughtful leadership. It’s a perspective that is sometimes lost in the high-stakes environment of politics, where the rush to judgment can overshadow the need for thorough investigation and fairness.
As we consider the implications of this revelation, it’s essential to remember the value of integrity and prudence in leadership. The ability to distinguish between rumour and reality and to act justly is a quality that should be upheld by all leaders, ensuring that decisions are made not just for the present moment but with an eye towards the lasting impact on people and society.
Did You Know?
- The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was established in 1958 and is crucial in managing the nation’s monetary policy.
- Presidential elections in Nigeria are held every four years, with the President limited to two terms in office.
- Fairness in governance’ is a fundamental principle in democratic systems, emphasizing the importance of just and equitable treatment of all citizens.
- Memoirs by political figures often provide unique insights into the inner workings of governments and decision-making processes.
- The All Progressives Congress (APC) is one of the major political parties in Nigeria, formed in February 2013 from a merger of four opposition parties.