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DSS, NCoS clash: DSS has initiated investigations, says Spokesperson

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Emefiele at court with DSS, warders

The Department of State Services (DSS) has initiated detailed investigations into the clash between its personnel and those of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) in the Federal High Court compplex in Lagos.

Dr Peter Afunanya, the Public Relations Officer of DSS, said this in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.

Afunanya described the clash as an unfortunate incident, adding that it was not a reflection of the professional disposition of the DSS.

”It is not a reflection of professional disposition of the department. The service will never encourage such incident in view of the respect it accords the Judiciary as an arm and institution of government.
“The DSS recognises the Judiciary as a critical component in nation building, national development and security management.
“Also, the service has robust working relationship with sister security and law enforcement agencies including the NCoS.
“While noting that the personnel from both agencies exhibited undue overzealousness, he said the investigation was to identify the role played by specific persons leading to the fiasco.
“We shall also look at possible disciplinary steps where necessary, and draw some lessons going forward.”
According to him, for emphasis, the DSS has not broken any law in handling the suspended CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele case in spite of efforts by some elements to skew the narratives to the contrary.
He said the Service had alerted the public of plots to discredit its leadership, but noted that, in pursuit of its assignments, the Service would strive to remain professional, maintain ethical standards and high sense of discipline.
Afunanya pledged the committment of the Service to remain focused on its national security mandate.
He enjoined the public to support the service in achieving the desired security goals for the nation.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that operatives of the DSS and the NSC officials on Tuesday went into show of force over who should take Emefiele into custody.

Emefiele was brought before Federal High Court, Lagos for arraignment by the DSS for illegal possession of firearms and ammunition, but the suspended CBN boss was granted bail in the sum of N20 million with one surety.

The trial judge, Justice Nicholas Oweibo, ordered the remand of Emefiele in NCS’s custody pending the time Emefiele would perfect his bail granted him.

However, the moment the court proceeding ended, a mild drama ensued as the DSS personnel, who brought the defendant to court, insisted on taking him back to their custody, in deviance to the court’s order.

NAN reports that Justice Oweibo admitted Emefiele to bail in the sum of N20million.

Emefiele is standing trial on a two-counts charge bordering on possession of a single barrel shot gun, as well as possession of 123 rounds of live ammunition without licences

He had pleaded not guilty to the charge.

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Job Losses, Factory Closures Loom As Unsold Goods Pile Up — MAN

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AGAINST the backdrop of sustained pressure in the foreign exchange market and high cost of production, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, MAN has indicated that inventory of unsold goods is escalating to levels now threatening the existence of companies operating in the production sector of the economy with attendant job losses.

Findings show that as of the weekend the foreign exchange market had recorded over 254 per cent plunge in the value of the naira since flotation of the currency by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in June 2023.

Recall that the naira traded for N471 per dollar in the official I&E market on June 13, 2023 before the floatation of the currency, but exchanged for N1,665.50 to a dollar as at February 23, 2024 on the Nigerian Foreign Exchange Market (NAFEM), indicating a depreciation of more than 253.6 per cent over the eight-month period. The forex crisis is also stoking inflation, and coupled with high energy costs, purchasing power has continued plummet, stifling demand for goods.

Speaking on the impact of this development on the manufacturing sector, Director General, MAN, Segun Ajayi-Kadir, said: “There are reports that across the board, many warehouses and plants of many manufacturing firms are stockpiled with unsold goods manufactured last year. “The development is as a result of the devastating effects of the exchange rate crisis, inflation, fake and sub-standard goods, smuggling and other macro-economics challenges.”

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CBN Lifts Ban On BDCs, Introduces New Operational Mechanism

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In a major development aimed at financial stability and strengthening the naira, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) plans to resume its weekly intervention in the country’s foreign exchange (FX) market through the Bureau de Change (BDC) operators.

In 2021, the central bank, in a bid to achieve its mandate of safeguarding the value of the local currency, ensuring financial system stability, and shoring up external reserves, announced the immediate discontinuance of foreign currency sales to Bureau de Change (BDC) operators in the country.

However, the resumed intervention, which would reportedly commence today for funding as well as Tuesday for collection, will see the apex bank inject FX into the subsector in a bid to rescue the naira from further depreciation against major currencies, particularly the US Dollar. The collection will be at designated CBN branches in Lagos, Abuja, Kano, and Awka, while details of the naira accounts to be credited for funding bidding will also be made available today.

CBN is also expected to publish the list of eligible BDCs to benefit from its funding using certain compliance criteria.National Executive Council of Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) hinted on the latest developments through a memo to its members over the weekend.

The association also warned members that it will no longer be business as usual under the new supervisory regime of the central bank, as any infringement or infraction would result in outright revocation of license and prosecution.

ABCON said through the association’s various engagements with the central bank, in conjunction with ABCON’s strategic partners, CBN had agreed to its request, under the bank’s supervision, to inject liquidity into the market through a weekly intervention beginning today.

CBN assured ABCON that the new circular on the Revised Regulatory and Supervisory Guidelines to BDCs, which was introduced over the weekend, was only a draft exposure that required the association’s inputs before the release of the final guidelines by the apex bank.

To that effect, the letters of the guidelines were not cast in stone, the association’s leadership told its members, who had been worried over the sweeping reforms in the document, which, among other things, prescribed N2 billion and N500 million minimum capital for national and state BDCs, respectively.

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