Monday, March 1, 2021 9:15 am
Professor Chukwuma Soludo, a former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said he insisted on consolidation of the Nigerian bannking industry in 2004 despite threats to his life and those of his family members because he is a very impatient person to see change happen.
According to him, a good leader must be adamant and revolutionary when embarking on progressive policies.
The former CBN Governor who is contesting for the governorship of Anambra State on the platform of the All Progressive Grand Alliance spoke during interaction with journalists in Awka.
He noted that before the consolidation policy, operators in the Nigerian banking industry were very small and weak to support the nation’s development.
“I am a very impatient person to see change happen and I am passionate in anything I focus on. At that time, no bank in Nigeria was in the top 1,000 banks in the world. If you needed to make an investment of $500m, you had to go through the then 39 banks and it was an impossible task.
“If you wanted to borrow abroad, there was no bank here to guarantee that. So, I came to the realisation that if we wanted to build a private sector-driven economy, it was not possible with the rickety ‘mama and papa’ banks, which could not guarantee even N3m loan. We, therefore, needed to pull down the house and rebuild it.
But following repeated threats to his life and that of his family over the policy, the former CBN Governor said he has to move his family to exile.
Soludo said he received 19 written threats to his life and there were even attempts to kidnap his family.
“There was nothing I did not see. I received 19 written threats to my life. Even there were attempts to kidnap my children at Offa in Kwara State. So, it was a very brutal revolution. I had to evacuate my family during the banking consolidation because when you want to uproot a system, it is usually a deadly routine.”