This morning, the President of Nigeria unveild the new N200, N500, and N1,000 notes.
Following the kickoff of this week’s Federal Executive Council meeting, President Buhari unveiled the notes at the Council Chambers of the State House.
Fielding questions from correspondents after the event, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, insisted that the move is not targeted at anyone.
Rather, he said the too-tightly-controlled money supply was problematic.
“This move is to enable the Central Bank of Nigeria have control over the size of money in circulation
“There is no need to think that the programme is targeted at anyone. During my speech at the unveiling, I said that plans for this started early in the year. We considered the pros and cons carefully.
“In the past, attempts to redesign and reissue currencies have been resisted. Only a President of Muhammadu Buhari’s character could have made it happen,” he said.
There will be drastic reductions in the amount that can be withdrawn from the counter, Emefiele said. Withdrawing money in large amounts would require several procedures and security checks to prevent fraud.
This would work to help ensure a smooth transition into a cashless economy.
President Muhammadu Buhari launches the newly redesigned Naira Notes at the State House, Abuja. pic.twitter.com/LieMvYl87e
— Government of Nigeria (@NigeriaGov) November 23, 2022
The CBN governor said Nigerians have time to return the old currency in circulation; 2023 is not far away, and he pointed out that the apex bank will not extend the deadline.
According to him, “As of 2018, we had 86,000 touchpoints nationwide where Nigerians could deposit and withdraw money. In October 2022, that number has risen to 1.4 million touchpoints.
“That is to say we have over 1.4 million bank branches, POS points and other ancillary outfits to enable Nigerians return the old notes.”
According to Emefiele, the apex bank will now redesign the currency after every five to eight years. This is in accordance with article 34 of the Nigerian constitution.