The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says it has redeployed 1,500 staff members to its Lagos office from the headquarters to enhance productivity, safety, and compliance with building regulations.
According to an internal memo by the apex bank, issued to staff and obtained by Persecondnews, the restructuring is aimed at achieving an even geographical spread of talent and also reducing the headquarters occupancy level to 2,733 personnel from 4,233.
An official said: “Yes, the plan is still on, and they will resume work by February 2, which is the first week of next month.”The memo reads: “This is to notify all staff members at the CBN Head Office that we have initiated a decongestion action plan designed to optimize the operational environment of the bank.
“This initiative aims to ensure compliance with building safety standards and enhance the efficient utilization of our office space.”
Persecondnews reports that over 80 percent of the staff of the Banking Supervision Department have been redeployed, and the same is true for the Payment System Department. According to reports, the departments penciled down for relocation by CBN Governor Yemi Cardoso include Banking Supervision, Other Financial Institutions Supervision, Consumer Protection Department, Payment System Management Department, and Financial Policy Regulations Department.
Persecondnews recalls that the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has warned that the movement of key departments of CBN from Abuja to Lagos may lead to brain drain.
The development, the elders said, would cause strain and disruption to the bank’s performance and efficiency.
Reacting to the development, in a statement, the Director of Publicity and Advocacy of NEF, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, noted that the relocation of the bank would result in increased cost, reduced coordination, regional economic disparities, and impaired economic development in northern Nigeria, among others.
The statement said: “It would require significant financial investment as the CBN would need to allocate funds for setting up new offices, purchasing or leasing properties, relocating employees, and other infrastructural requirements.
“This would strain the CBN’s budget and divert resources away from other essential functions and initiatives.”
But a former Emir of Kano and ex-CBN governor, Sanusi Lamido, has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria to go ahead with the move to relocate selected departments from Abuja headquarters to Lagos.
Sanusi, in a statement, said the move is “eminently sensible,” citing the larger infrastructure capacity in the Lagos office of the apex bank.