Suspended Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi has sued President Goodluck Jonathan before a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, challenging his suspension from office.
In a suit filed late Monday by some of his lawyers, including Kola Awodein (SAN), Sanusi is urging the court to, among others, restrain the President and two others from giving effect to his purported suspension, pending the determination of his suit.
Also to be restrained are the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and the Inspector General of Police (IGP), sued with the President.Sanusi is pleading for an order of interlocutory injunction restraining the defendants from obstructing, disturbing, stopping or preventing him in any manner, from performing the functions of his office and enjoying in full, the statutory powers and privileges attached to the office of the governor of the CBN.
He said the interlocutory application he filed with the suit was necessitated by the issues raised in the suit.
Sanusi is of the view that delay could occasion irreparable, serious damage and mischief against him in the exercise of his statutory duties as the CBN Governor. He urged the court to grant the prayers contained in his interlocutory application, on the ground that the President’s alleged unlawful interference with the management and administration of the CBN, unless arrested, posed grave danger to the country’s economy.
He argued that granting his application will encourage parties to maintain the status quo, pending the determination of the substantive case. In a supporting affidavit, Sanusi averred that in the course of his duties as the CBN Governor, that he discovered certain discrepancies in respect of amounts repatriated to the federation account from the proceed of crude oil sales between the period of January, 2012 and July, 2013 and that he expressed concern in respect of the said discrepancies and had cause to inform the National Assembly of the said discrepancies because they affect the revenue of the federation and the national economy.
He stated that the President’s action, in purporting to suspend him from office, is aimed at punishing him for these disclosures.
Sanusi stated that he is challenging the President’s power to suspend him from office, noting that the President did not approach nor obtain the support of the Senate, based on his discussions with several senators, including Senator Bukola Saraki.
“I have been informed, and I verily believe the information given to me by Senator Bukola Saraki to be true and correct that the Senate did not give the President any support for my purported suspension and removal from office as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria.”
Sanusi stated that the President’s actions in suspending him from office is contrary to provisions of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act relating to the appointment and removal of the CBN Governor and that his purported suspension amounts to unlawful interference in the administration and management of the apex bank and is illegal, null and void. He urged the court, in the interest of justice, to grant his reliefs.
The suit is yet to be assigned for hearing.