The presidency yesterday disclosed that neither the federal government nor the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had taken a pre-emptive position on the legality of the old N200, N500 and N1,000 notes in view of the case pending before the Supreme Court, which comes up for hearing today.
In a statement by its spokesperson, Mallam Garba Shehu, the presidency said the federal government’s position on the currency swap would be made public after the determination of the suit.
The statement said, “Following series of enquiries, we wish to state that it is not true that the federal government or the CBN has taken a pre-emptive action on the legality of currency as a legal tender in view of the pendency of the case before the Supreme Court.
“The position of the government and the CBN will be made known upon the determination of the suit coming up Wednesday.”
The Supreme Court had in a ruling on February 8 suspended the CBN’s February 10 deadline to stop the use of old currency notes.
But the apex court, ruling in an ex parte application by three states – Zamfara, Kogi and Kaduna – stopped the CBN from banning the old notes pending the hearing and determination of the case. It fixed February 15 for hearing.
However, governor of CBN, Godwin Emefiele, yesterday, said the apex bank had noticed that some politicians were buying the new N200, N500 and N1, 000 for political purposes.
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That was as a coalition of 472 civil society organisations (CSOs) alleged yesterday at a press conference in Abuja that 10 state governors were mopping up the new naira notes in circulation in order to discredit the policy.
Addressing the diplomatic community in Abuja, the CBN governor craved the support and understanding of the foreign missions and Nigerians, in general, towards the implementation of the cashless policy and in achieving the overall objectives of the naira redesign programme.
“The CBN has also noticed that some politicians are buying the new notes and storing them for political purposes,” he said.