.Ganduje, Abiodun threaten to shut commercial banks rejecting notes
.Implementation of Naira redesign policy political-Wike
.As Falana blasts apex bank
. Aggrieved residents protest naira scarcity in Ogun
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has declared that the old N200, N500, and N1000 are no longer legal tender in Nigeria. The apex bank said this took effect from February 10, 2023.
CBN had originally fixed January 31 as the deadline for old notes to be in circulation but extended it in response to pressure from Nigerians.
However, before the February 10 deadline, Kogi, Kaduna, and Zamfara States approached the Supreme Court, seeking that the CBN be restrained from going ahead with the deadline.
The Court answered their prayer and adjourned the case till February 15.
However, there has been silence on the part of the apex bank since the court gave its ruling.
The silence threw Nigerians into confusion about the state of the old notes, which were widely rejected but accepted in some places.
Commenting on the development in a chat with journalists, CBN Branch Controller in Bauchi, Haladu Idris Andaza, said the old notes were no longer legal tender.
“In the last 24 hours, we have been inundated by questions from various angles of the general public about our operational guidelines on the old currency notes, be that as it may, there are so many questions here and there that people have been asking about.
“So for the avoidance of doubt, we wish to state categorically that CBN is ready and is open to receiving all of those old notes based on certain conditions and criteria. Customers are free to come to the Bank and deposit which they cannot do at the Commercial Banks anymore because the currency has seized to be legal tender since the 10th of this month.
“Consequently, the management of the CBN decided that those customers will heave a sigh of relief by coming to the offices of the CBN in all the 36 states in the Federation including FCT to deposit their money.
“The customer has to go to the CBN portal and fill a form in the portal, there will be a form there concerning this currency redesign and exchange. After filling out the form, you generate a code, you either print it or come with it on your mobile phone and give us the code and the information contained therein. In the form, you are expected to provide all the basic information about yourself, your account details, and the amount you want to deposit.
“By the time you have done it correctly, you come to the CBN where the code will be accepted from you as well as the money, process and confirm the genuineness or otherwise of the money to avoid receiving fake notes because there are some fake notes in circulation now.”
Meanwhile, Ogun State governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, has warned that the State government would shut down any Commercial Banks operating in the state that refused to accept old naira notes.
The warning is sequel to complains received from the people by the state government that commercial banks and some filling stations are rejecting the old naira notes as legal tender.
The governor spoke on Tuesday while addressing market men and women at Itoku Kampala market in Abeokuta, as part of his reelection campaign to Abeokuta North Local Government Areas.
Abiodun , who frowned at the action of the banks, noted that since the new naira notes was not available, commercial banks must accept the old notes to ease the suffering of the people.
He called on the people to remain calm, assuring that his government was working assiduously to ensure that the present situation was brought under control.
Speaking on the epileptic power supply affecting the market, the governor assured that he would reach out to the appropriate authority to improve on the power supply to the market.
Abiodun added that the controversy surrounding the non-issuance of documents to some shop owners at the market would be addressed.
He promised that some of the outstanding issues currently affecting the market would be given a priority during his second term in office.
The governor appreciated the traders for their support so far, imploring them to vote all the candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the February 25 and March 11 election.
The governor promised that 200 market men and women would benefit from the government’s loan arrangement, saying that the Oko Owo Dapo scheme would be extended to them.
Abiodun expressed dismay that the transformer given to the market was not functioning effectively and directed that new ones be brought to the market immediately.
Addressing the people at the Mokola-Elega Under Bridge, Abiodun stated that his administration would complete the road during his second term, calling for their maximum support in the elections.
The Otun Iyaloja of Itoku, Mrs Simbiat Oyetola, commended the governor for the boreholes provided in the market, urging the governor to assist the traders in resolving the problem of epileptic power supply.
Similarly, The Kano State government has threatened to revoke the operational licenses of significant business owners or take action against anyone who refuses to accept the old naira notes as a means of transaction.
Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje in a statement issued by the commissioner for information and internal affairs, Malam Muhammad Garba, said the old naira notes are still legal tender.
He said the Supreme Court was emphatic on its interim injunction on the issue of the old naira notes which would continue to be used as legal tender hand-in-hand with the new ones until its gradual and final phase-out.
particularly the poor people.”
He said those who insist that the naira swap policy will curb corruption and eliminate vote buying during the general election are not sincere. According to him, “the whole thing is been political, and that is not what it is supposed to be.”
Governor Wike, said it is regrettable the CBN has failed to emulate the global best practice in its implementation of the naira swap policy. He stressed that ideally the CBN should have allowed the old notes to be in circulation alongside the new notes for at least one year before it is completely phased out.
“You have also not made the new one available and then you have said we can’t collect the old one again. Now, you that even have money in the bank, you’re not allowed to even collect your money.”
The governor observed that those who are advocating that Nigerians should embrace internet banking have failed to take into cognisance the fact that vast majority of the citizens, particularly in the rural areas don’t have bank accounts.
Governor Wike charged the media not to be indifferent to the prevailing situation in the country because it has a vital role to play in the peoples’ quest for actualisation of a just and equitable nation.
Earlier, the Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief of Independent Newspapers, Steve Omanufeme, said governor Wike, was nominated for the award for his dogged fight for justice, equity and fairness.
“We are today to officially present the letter of your nomination as Independent Man of the year 2022. Everybody can see and know what you have done in Rivers State. But beyond that, we are giving this award because of your action which people misunderstood, especially your contribution to good governance, your dogged fight for justice, equity and fairness.
Omanufeme said governor Wike has become the voice of the voiceless in the country and expressed confidence that history will be fair to him.
“For me, an example has to be made this time around, so that nobody will feel that he’s above the law in our country,” he added.
Aggrieved residents protest naira scarcity in Ogun
Scores of residents of Sango Ota in Ogun State, on Tuesday, protested the scarcity of naira notes in the state.
The aggrieved protesters, who were mostly youths, trooped out to block the Lagos-Abeokuta highway which led to gridlock in the area.
They also made bonfires on the expressway as many motorists were stranded for hours.
The protesters, however, called on the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and commercial banks in the country to release their money or face dire consequence.
One of the protesters, Rotimi Odubanjo, stated that the inability to withdraw money from banks has inflicted untold discomfort on the people.
“We need the Federal Government to come to our assistance and ease this cash and fuel scarcity,“ Odubanjo said.
He said the scarcity of fuel and naira notes has crippled economic activities and was leading to hunger.
Police, military, and paramilitary personnel were seen at the scene of protest calming the protesters.
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