Nigerians have taken to social media to react to President Muhammadu Buhari’s refusal to budge from his decision to withdraw old Naira notes from circulation.
President Buhari during a live TV broadcast on Thursday avowed that old N1,000 and N500 notes cease to be legal tenders but approved the recirculation of old N200 notes for sixty days to cushion the effect of the Naira redesign and cash swap policy on the masses.
“I have given approval to the CBN that the old N200 bank notes be released back into circulation and that it should also be allowed to circulate as legal tender with the new N200, N500, and N1000 banknotes for 60 days from Feb. 10, 2023, to April 10 2023,” Buhari said.
He added, “In line with Section 20(3) of the CBN Act 2007, all existing old N1000 and N500 notes remain redeemable at the CBN and designated points.”
Some governors of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) had approached the Supreme Court to challenge the policy and got an order directing the Federal Government to continue to allow the use of old N200, N500, and N1,000 notes.
But in his address, President Buhari said his administration has operated “within the ambits of the law” in implanting the policy.
He appealed to the ordinary citizens to bear the effect of the policy and assured that his administration would continue to assess the policy’s implementation “with a view to ensuring that Nigerians are not unnecessarily burdened” adding “In this regard, the CBN shall ensure that new notes become more available and accessible to our citizens through the banks.”
Reacting, some Nigerians lauded the president for standing his ground by refusing to approve the recirculation of all the old notes to stop politicians who might have stockpiled the old notes for vote-buying during the forthcoming presidential elections.