The battle for Mallam Lamido Sanusi Lamido’s successor as the Central Bank of Nigeria Governor is not just on, but getting fiercer and fiercer. YES International! investigations uncovered an intense lobbying and reaching out by the about a dozen candidates interested in taking over from the Kano-born Prince whose dream, according to him, is to become an Emir. Among those allegedly waiting and praying for the incumbent’s tenure to come to an end are two former bank MDs – Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede of Access Bank Plc and Bisi Onasanya of First Bank of Nigeria Plc. Two ministers in the current dispensation are also said to be eyeing the prestigious position – and they are Olusegun Aganga of the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and Yerima Ngama of the Ministry of Finance (State). Four of Sanusi’s deputies are equally interested in succeeding him. And these are Tunde Lemo (Deputy Governor, Operations), Kingsley Muoghalu (Deputy Governor, Financial System Stability), Sarah Alade (Deputy Governor, Economic Policy) and Suleiman Barau (Deputy Governor, Corporate Services Directorate). And lastly is Mustapha Chike-Obi, son of celebrated mathematician and MD, Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON). Sanusi’s first term of 5-years will end in June 2014. And because he has been shouting it from the roof top that he’s not interested in a second term, all those who want to take over from him have been pressing the necessary buttons, reaching out to those that can swing it in their favour as well as embarking on serious praying and fasting. “Becoming the CBN Governor is the ultimate for most of those people. And as such none of them is leaving any stone unturned to see that the lot falls on him. Besides the intense lobbying currently going on now in different quarters, some of those eyeing the position are seriously praying and fasting. Some have even reached out to their pastors and imams. It’s not just about the money to be made, but the prestige accompanying the position. Do you know what it means to have your signature on your country’s legal tender? There are also other benefits and that is why all of them will give an arm and a leg to succeed Sanusi”, one inside source told us. Speculations had been rife on this matter for quite some time. Especially because Sanusi has repeatedly said he will not seek a second term and also because of his not – too – cordial relationship with The Presidency. Garrulous and controversial, The Presidency has been shopping for his successor for long – and is only waiting for his tenure to come to an end before unveiling the new man for this job which is very, very critical to the Nigerian economy. Meanwhile, we also gathered that other than the President, Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, some of the people and their sponsors have allegedly been reaching out also to his wife, Dame Patience Jonathan; the Secretary to the Federal Government, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim; his Chief of Staff, Chief Mike Oghiadome and others, to put in a word for their candidates.