Nearly one month after the #EndSARS protests heat has died down, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned that the protests might have some adverse effects on the economic recovery in the short term. This was revealed in the recently published document by the CBN titled, Central Bank of Nigeria Communiqué No 133 of the Monetary Policy Committee of November 23 and 24, 2020.
When examining the improvement in the Purchasing Manager’s Index for the month of November including the employment level index components in both manufacturing and non-manufacturing sectors, the committee warned that the ‘recent unrest’ in the country might cause a ‘downside risk to growth’.
“The Committee noted the likely downside risk to growth of the recent unrest in the country, warning that this may adversely impact economic recovery in the near term,” the document read in part.
Shortly after the protests died down several warehouses across the country where COVID-19 palliatives were kept were looted and privately-owned properties were by hoodlums.
In its consideration to the federal government, the committee also advised that the government maintained its initiatives that were targeted at reducing unemployment among young people. This followed the committee’s acknowledgment of the monetary and fiscal policies put in place to quickly reverse what they termed ‘impending recession’.
“It (the MPC) urged the Federal Government to maintain its initiatives targeted at reducing unemployment, particularly among the youths, citing the recent EndSARS protests and ensuing agitation by hoodlums as potentially disruptive to output growth in Nigeria,” another part of the document read.
The MPC also urged that the CBN did what it could to maintain policies on the exchange rate and financial system stability to make foreign investment in the Nigerian equities market more attractive.