CBN Defends Redesigning of Notes

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CEM REPORT, FINANCE | Reacting to the comment of the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmad the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has insisted that it followed the law and due process in the ongoing Naira notes redesigning exercise.

Recall that the Minister had said her ministry was not aware of the intended redesign of the bank notes and only hear about it in the media.

The CBN in a statement sent to media houses early hours of this morning stressed that it remains a very thorough institution that follows due process in its policy actions.

The statement by the bank’s spokesman, Osita Nwanisobi, expressed surprise at the minister’s claim noting that the bank obtained the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari in writing to redesign, produce, release and circulate new series of N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes.

“The Management of the CBN, in line with provisions of section 2(b), section 18(a), and section 19(a)(b) of the CBN Act 2007, had duly sought and obtained the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari in writing to redesign, produce, release and circulate new series of N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes.”

He enjoined Nigerians to support the currency redesign stating that it was in the overall interest of every Nigerian.

He noted that redesigning the notes was 20 years overdue while noting that the standard practice globally was for central banks to redesign, produce and circulate new local legal tender every five to eight years.

Furthermore, he noted that currency management in the country had faced several escalating challenges which threatened the integrity of the currency, the CBN. He also reiterated that some persons were hoarding significant sums of banknotes outside the vaults of commercial banks.

The CBN spokesman expressed optimism that the effort will, among other goals, deepen Nigeria’s push to entrench a cashless economy in the face of increased minting of the eNaira.

This, he said, is in addition to helping to curb the incidents of terrorism and kidnapping due to access of persons to the large volume of money outside the banking system used as a source of funds for ransom payments.

The Naira redesign project, he said “is for the greater good of the economy.”

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