The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has been ordered by President Bola Tinubu to impose a number of financial sanctions on people and organizations connected to the coup leaders who toppled the democratic government of the Niger Republic.
Ajuri Ngelale, the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, revealed this on Tuesday while speaking with journalists at the State House in Abuja. She did not provide any additional information regarding the sanctions but insisted that they were being implemented under the direction of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
Additionally, Nigeria has already stopped supplying electricity to its northern neighboring nation, Niger, in an effort to put pressure on the military to restore expelled President Mohamed Bazoum.
According to Ngelale: “The news is that Mr. President has directed the acting CBN governor to levy another slew of sanctions against entities and individuals associated with the military junta in Niger Republic.
“I said that intentionally. I didn’t make a mistake, because I was given permission to make that statement and I emphasize that this is not an individual action taken by an individual President on behalf of individual nation.
“This is an action taken. Yes, by ECOWAS chairman who is the president of Nigeria but standing on the authority provided by the consensus resolution of all ECOWAS members and heads of state with regard to financial sanctions being levied by ECOWAS Member States against the military junta in Niger Republic.
“There is an authority that we are standing on. It is not Nigerian government authority, it is the authority of the resolution passed in public before now.”
The Media Adviser explained that the actions against Niger being coordinated by President Tinubu were not personal as they were under the auspices of the ECOWAS where he is the Chairman of the Authority of Heads of State and Government.
His words: “Concerning the ultimatum given to the military Junta in Niger Republic, the ECOWAS mandate, and ultimatum is not a Nigerian ultimatum. It is not a Nigerian mandate.
“And the office of His Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, also serving as the Chairman of ECOWAS, seeks to emphasize this point, that due to certain domestic and international media coverage, tending toward a personalization of the ECOWAS sub regional position to his person and to our nation individually.
“It is because of this that Mr. President has deemed it necessary to state unequivocally that the mandate and ultimatum issued by ECOWAS is that of ECOWAS’ position.
“While his Excellency, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu has assumed the ECOWAS chairmanship, the position of ECOWAS conveys the consensus position of member heads of state. And a coup will not occur in one’s backyard, without one being particularly aware of it.
“The president in recent days, particularly following the expiration of the ultimatum given by ECOWAS has widened consultations internationally but most especially domestically, including interfacing with state governors in Nigeria, who govern states bordering Niger public on the various fallouts and outcomes of the unfortunate situation that has unfolded in Niger Republic.
“But President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, wishes to emphasize to this distinguished audience that the response of ECOWAS to the military coup in Niger has been and will remain devoid of ethnic and religious sentiments and considerations.
“The regional bloc is made up of all sub regional ethnic groups, religious groups, and all other forms of human diversity. And the response of ECOWAS, therefore, represents all of these groups, and not any of these groups individually.”
According to him, Thursday’s extraordinary summit of ECOWAS in Abuja will come up with far-reaching decisions on the recent developments in Niger Republic.