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APC Governors Reject Feb 10 Deadline For Naira Swap

Posted by Thandiubani on Fri 03rd Feb, 2023 -

They also told Emefiele that while the old naira notes were being mopped up, it was evident the CBN could not make the new notes available.

The Central Bank of Nigeria's (CBN) February 10 deadline to end the legal tender status of the old N1000, N500 and N200 notes has been rejected by governors elected under the All Progressives Congress.
According to DailyTrust, the governors said they were worried Nigerians have been finding it difficult to live a normal life in the last few days and therefore resolved to meet President Muhammadu Buhari on the matter.
A source told the newspaper that the APC governors would tell the president most likely at 10am today that beyond whatever gains that would come with the naira swap, the wrong timing by the CBN is already hurting the economy, the wellbeing of the citizens and the security of the country.
Before reaching the decision to meet the president, the governors had reportedly nominated Governors Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos), Nasir El-Rufai (Kaduna), Mai Mala Buni (Yobe) and Dapo Abiodun (Ogun), who had met with CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele between January 30 and 31. During the meeting, they reportedly expressed their displeasure over the “hasty nature”, the cashless policy transition was being managed.
They also told Emefiele that while the old naira notes were being mopped up, it was evident the CBN could not make the new notes available to commercial banks as Nigerians struggle to access the money they legally deposited in commercial banks.
The governors were also said to have told Emefiele that it was evident the commercial banks did not have the needed technology to absolve the shock of increasing pressure of customers as evident in failed transactions using various internet platforms.
One of our sources said the governors told Emefiele to extend the transition period to between six months and one year so as to have a realistic cashless society.
“But Emefiele told them that there was actually no ill-feeling while taking the decision to change the naira notes; and that it was not his unilateral decision. He told them the president has to be in the picture,” the source said.
According to him, “All the APC governors are not happy because in the first instance, they were not consulted on the new naira policy and the timing and they felt that as a federating unit, states must be consulted before such a sensitive decision is taken.
“They told Emefiele that the anticipated gains of the policy have been deflated because Nigerians are angry; their economy is grounded and many of them have to pay money to access their monies.
“They told Emefiele that the approach is not in line with international best practices because the infrastructure that will support cashless policy is weak. There is no single state in the North for instance that all its LGAs have banks. There are similar challenges in some states in the South and that it is the informal sector that drives the economy and therefore, Nigerians require more time, knowledge and support to transit to a cashless society,” he said.
He said the four governors had briefed their colleagues and they collectively agreed to seek audience with President Buhari saying the meeting will take place any moment from now.

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