An industrialist and Chief Executive Officer, Erisco Foods Limited, Chief Eric Umeofia, has called on the Federal Government to probe foreign exchange allocations by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Umeofia, who made this call while addressing a press conference in Lagos, said, “We call on the government to probe approvals of the CBN intervention funds and forex allocation in the interest of our dear country. If not, Nigerians will continue to cry without knowing who is responsible for their poverty.”
The Erisco boss had threatened to sack over 1,500 workers working in his tomato paste company and move his manufacturing firm out of Nigeria if nothing was done by the government to address the forex scarcity.
There was, however, a report alleging that his firm had actually benefitted from the CBN intervention funds amounting to N3bn under the Commercial Agriculture Credit Scheme between 2014 and 2016.
But Umeofia insisted that the amount allocated to his firm was merely four per cent in dollar value and seven per cent in naira value of the total amount required to run his business.
He said, “This huge investment requires at least $30m to meet our installed capacity of packaging lines.”
The Erisco boss said he had documents to support his allegations that importers of frozen fish and tomato paste were allocated forex in contravention of CBN’s policy.
“We have documents to prove all our cases and still restate our position that if we have fabricated lies on this issue, we should be investigated and prosecuted,” he stated.