The Presidency clarified that Tinubu has no intentions of relocating the federal capital to Lagos.

Bayo Onanuga, the special adviser on information and strategy to President Bola Tinubu, emphasized that his principal has no intention of relocating the country’s capital from Abuja to Lagos. Onanuga denounced those spreading rumors about Tinubu’s alleged plan to move the nation’s capital to Lagos as “dishonest and ethnic champions.”

Regarding recent relocation announcements by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Onanuga stressed that these should not cause unnecessary confusion. While the CBN announced the relocation of several divisions from Abuja to Lagos, FAAN declared that its headquarters would also move from Abuja to Lagos.

Different parties reacted differently to these announcements; for example, the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) disagreed with the decision. On Tuesday, Ali Ndume, the chief whip of the senate, cautioned Tinubu about the potential political consequences of the decision.

On Wednesday, Onanuga issued a statement supporting the decision, arguing that a regulator should be situated close to the businesses it regulates. He also emphasized that administrative decisions should not be politicized, and he accused those spreading the relocation rumor of attempting to stoke regional tensions between the north and the south.

“President Tinubu has no plan whatsoever to move the Federal Capital to Lagos,” he said.

“The movement of FAAN, a department of aviation ministry to Lagos, where it was based before former minister Hadi Sirika moved it to Abuja during the last administration, does not amount to moving the FCT to Lagos.

“The administrative move should have attracted scant attention, as Lagos is the commercial capital and the hub of aviation business in Nigeria.

“FAAN should be nowhere else but near the industry it regulates. FAAN will still maintain some presence in Abuja, as it is not a wholesale movement.

“Similarly, the movement of some departments of the CBN to Lagos should not trigger any hoopla.

“The departments concerned, including the bank supervision department, are those dealing with commercial banks, all with headquarters in Lagos. A regulator ought to be close to the businesses it regulates.

“All those pushing this campaign of falsehood and misinformation know they are merely playing politics, albeit a dangerous politics, to pit the North against the South.

Numerous parastatals operate outside of Abuja, aligning with their specific mandates. For instance, the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) are headquartered in Lagos. Similarly, the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) is based in Lokoja, and the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB), inaugurated by former President Muhammadu Buhari, is located in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State.

“Administrative decisions should not be politicized. Let it not look like whenever we are temporarily not at the helm of affairs, we create all manners of dangerous rumours to distract from the bigger picture and emasculate an administration led by a southerner.”

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