Nigeria’s stock market loses N54bn over parliament invasion
President Muhammadu Buhari
BY FRANCIS EZEM
The dwindling fortunes of Nigeria’s stock market took a turn for the worse following the crude invasion of the National Assembly complex yesterday by masked operatives of the Department of State Services DSS, an indication that the country may risk yet another round of economic crisis due to political instability.
The bourse had declined by a whooping N54 billion Tuesday, from N13.315 trillion on Monday to N13.261 trillion as against the marginal depreciation of N7 billion to N13.315 trillion on Monday from the N13.322 trillion recorded Friday last week.
Experts warn that caution must be taken by the political actors in the country in order not to further jeopardise the already fragile economy, which just emerged from a long recession, saying that such fresh economic crisis might not augur well for the country.
According to the experts, caution must be taken, given the current dwindling fortunes of the bourse may persist for some time, as equities prices may not rebound until after the 2019 general elections.
They argued that globally, the stock market reacts positively or negatively to information on political trends in any given jurisdiction, since political stability remains a major consideration before investment decisions are made whether by foreign or local investors.
Recall that condemnation has since yesterday trailed the forceful takeover of the Nigeria’s National Assembly Complex that houses the upper and lower legislative chambers, the Senate and House of Representatives by men of the DSS.
There are speculations that the move was part of plans by the ruling All Progressives Congress APC to sack the President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki, who defected to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party PDP penultimate week over irreconcilable difference with some party men.
Meanwhile, the acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, who also denied any knowledge of such plot, promptly sacked the Director General of the DSS, Mr. Lawal Daura, insisting that he acted without approval from the presidency.
Political watchers believe that the invasion of the National Assembly complex constituted a major threat to the nation’s nascent democracy, arguing that the parliament is the true symbol of civil rule in the country being directly elected representatives of the people unlike the executive and judiciary, which are present even in a military dictatorship.