The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has returned N500 and N1, 000 old notes as legal tender in compliance with the Supreme Court judgement.
Emefiele said that the old currency would remain in circulation until December 31, 2023, as stipulated in the Supreme Court judgement delivered on the redesigned currency.
The apex bank boss also directed commercial banks and other financial institutions to comply with the Supreme Court judgement that mandated that both the old and new notes should co-exist in circulation.
He made the declaration through a statement made available to newsmen by the CBN spokesperson, Isa Abdulmumin, on Monday.
“In compliance with the established tradition of obedience to court orders and sustenance of the Rule of Law Principle that characterized the government of President Muhammadu Buhari, and by extension, the operations of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), as a regulator, Deposit Money Banks operating in Nigeria have been directed to comply with the Supreme Court ruling of March 3, 2023
“Accordingly, the CBN met with the Bankers’ Committee and has directed that the old N200, N500 and N1000 banknotes remain legal tender alongside the redesigned banknotes till December 31, 2023.
“Consequently, all concerned are directed to conform accordingly.”
Earlier, President Muhammadu Buhari had said that the CBN does not need a directive from him to comply with the Supreme Court order to extend validity of old naira notes till December 2023.
“It is therefore wide off the mark to blame the President for the current controversy over the cash scarcity, despite the Supreme Court judgement. The CBN has no reason not to comply with court orders on the excuse of waiting for directives from the President,” Presidential spokesman Garba Shehu said in a statement.
Shehu distanced Buhari from the scarcity of cash and the noncompliance with the Supreme Court order.
READ ALSO: Supreme Court extends validity of old naira notes to December 2023
“The President is not a micromanager and will not, therefore, stop the Attorney General and the CBN Governor from performing the details of their duties in accordance with the law,” Shehu said.
“In any case. it is debatable at this time if there is proof of willful denial by the two of them on the orders of the apex court.”
Shehu insisted that Buhari’s directive after the meeting of the Council of State is that the CBN must make all needed cash available for circulation.
“It is an established fact that the President is an absolute respecter of judicial process and the authority of the courts,” Shehu said.
“He has done nothing in the last eight or so years to act in any way to obstruct the administration of justice, cause lack of confidence in the administration of justice, or otherwise interfere or corrupt the courts and there is no reason whatsoever that he should do so now when he is getting ready to leave
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