Buhari Reveals Why He Approved Redesign Of Naira Notes

 

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday in Abuja launched the new Naira banknotes, expressing delight that the redesigned currencies are locally produced by the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting (NSPM) PLC.

Speaking at the launch of the new banknotes, which preceded the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting, the President explained in detail the basis for his approval to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to redesign the ₦‎200, ₦‎500 and ₦‎1000 banknotes.

According to the President, ‘‘the new Naira banknotes have been fortified with security features that make them difficult to counterfeit.’’

He also added that the new banknotes would help the Central Bank design and implement better monetary policy objectives as well as enrich the collective memory of Nigeria’s heritage.


READ ALSO: Buhari Unveils Redesigned Naira Notes


President Buhari commended the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele and his Deputies for the initiative, while also thanking the Managing Director, Executive Directors and Staff of the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting PLC “for working tirelessly with the apex bank to make the currency redesign a reality, and for printing the new Naira notes within a comparatively short time.”

Acknowledging that international best practice requires central banks and national authorities to issue new or redesigned currency notes every 5 to 8 years, the President noted that it is now almost 20 years since the last major redesign of the country’s local currency was done.

‘‘This implies that the Naira is long overdue to wear a new look.

‘‘A cycle of banknote redesign is generally aimed at achieving specific objectives, including but not limited to: improving security of banknotes, mitigating counterfeiting, preserving the collective national heritage, controlling currency in circulation, and reducing the overall cost of currency management.

‘‘As is known, our local laws – specifically the Central Bank of Nigeria Act of 2007 – grants the Central Bank of Nigeria the power to issue and redesign the Naira.

‘‘In line with this power, the Central Bank Governor approached me earlier in this year to seek my permission to embark on a currency redesign project. I considered all the facts and reasons presented before me by the Central Bank.

‘‘There was an urgent need to take control of currency in circulation and to address the hoarding of Naira banknotes outside the banking system, the shortage of clean and fit banknotes in circulation, and the increase in counterfeiting of high-denomination Naira banknotes. It is on this basis that I gave my approval for the redesign of the ₦‎200, ₦‎500 and ₦‎1000 banknotes.
‘‘While this may not be apparent to many Nigerians, only 4 out of the 54 African countries print their currencies in their countries, and Nigeria is one. Hence, a majority of African countries print their currencies abroad and import them the way we import other goods.
‘‘That is why it is with immense pride that I announce to you that these redesigned currencies are locally produced right here in Nigeria by our Security Printing and Minting PLC,’’ he said.
In his remarks, the Governor of CBN, Godwin Emefiele, thanked the President for his unwavering support for the redesign and distribution of the new notes, which he said will control inflation, make policies more effective, ensure financial inclusion and fight corruption.
The CBN Governor also noted that by international best practice, the redesign of notes should be every five to eight years, and the currency in circulation had been in usage for 19 years, with spiraling challenges on the economy, especially on security and counterfeiting.
Emefiele also appreciated President Buhari for his insistence that the initial notes must be designed and produced within the country, further placing confidence in Nigerian Security Printing and Minting.
“Mr. President, only a President of your esteemed and incorruptible stature could have done what we are witnessing today,’’ he added.
The CBN Governor listed the benefits of the redesigned naira notes to include enhanced security, greater durability, attractiveness and promotion of rich cultural heritage.
Femi Adesina
Special Adviser to the President
(Media & Publicity)
November 23, 2022

Naira Redesign: CBN Pledges To Protect Nigerians In Rural Areas

The CBN had on October 26, 2022 said it will redesign the N200, N500, and N1,000 notes in order to take control of the currency in circulation.

 

Ahead of the planned redesign of the naira, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has pledged to protect Nigerians in the unbanked, underserved and rural areas.

The apex bank had on October 26, 2022 said it will redesign the N200, N500, and N1,000 notes.

CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, who announced this during a special press briefing, said the new design and issues will be effective from December 15, 2022.

READ ALSO: CBN To Redesign N200, N500 And N1,000 Notes

He had explained that the apex bank secured the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to roll out new notes to replace the existing currency in circulation.

About three weeks after the announcement, the apex bank issued a statement, saying it had been collaborating with relevant agencies and other stakeholders in the financial system to ensure that vulnerable citizens were not disenfranchised.

In a statement, CBN’s Director of Corporate Communications, Osita Nwanisobi said some progress had been as there had been increased currency deposits across banks and other financial institutions.

“The CBN remains committed to the seamless implementation of the initiative to ensure the achievement of its objectives to preserve the integrity of the local legal tender by reducing the significant amount of cash outside the banking system and its use in criminal activities, curtail counterfeiting, and promote financial inclusion, amongst others,” the statement read.

“Whilst noting the progressive increase in financial access points and alternative banking channels over the years (electronic/internet banking, mobile apps, ATM, Cards/PoS, eNaira, agent banking, etc.), the Bank acknowledges that these may not be evenly distributed across all geopolitical zones and in some rural areas.

 

Gov Sule ‘Shocked’ By Naira’s Fall Against Dollar

A file photo of Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule.
A file photo of Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule.

 

Governor Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State says he is worried about the naira’s fall against the dollar. 

Though concerned over the development, he hopes that the situation will be reversed soonest.

“I am extremely worried,” he said on Wednesday during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today, adding that the move to redesign the naira might have further worsened the situation.

“But again, it takes you back really to understand, ‘Does it worry me?’ Of course, it worries me very badly. Because is that making it a little easier on the part of the common man? No. The common man is actually going through the heat during this period.

“In fact, when I saw it yesterday, I was shocked to see the naira going all the way to N818 for a dollar.”

READ ALSO: CBN’s Naira Redesign Plan Purely Political, Has No Basis In Economics – Obaseki

He, however, reiterated that the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) plan to redesign the naira must have spiked the rush for the dollar and the subsequent fall of the nation’s currency.

The governor’s comment came hours after his Edo State counterpart Godwin Obaseki faulted the CBN’s move, claiming it was politically motivated.

“They say we should all bring our naira and give it to them because they want to change it for us. Is that our priority now? How does changing of currency reduce the price of food in the market? They say they want to change our currency and dollars are going higher every day. We can’t even see dollars again,” the governor said at the inauguration of the Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Women Campaign Council in Benin City, the Edo State capital.

“I am an economist and I can tell you categorically that this policy by the CBN and Federal Government has no basis in economics. There is no reason to do this; this is purely political.”

CBN’s Naira Redesign Plan Purely Political, Has No Basis In Economics – Obaseki

 

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has faulted the move to redesign the naira, claiming it has no economic basis and purely political plan.

He said this while inaugurating the Edo State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Women Campaign Council at the Presidential Campaign Secretariat in Benin City, the Edo State capital, on Wednesday.

“They say we should all bring our naira and give it to them because they want to change it for us. Is that our priority now? How does changing of currency reduce the price of food in the market? They say they want to change our currency and dollars are going higher every day. We can’t even see dollars again,” the governor added.

“I am an economist and I can tell you categorically that this policy by the CBN and Federal Government has no basis in economics. There is no reason to do this; this is purely political.”

READ ALSO: [PHOTOS] Tinubu Meets With Business Community In Lagos

Obaseki reiterated that there is no urgency to redesign the currency, claiming the country has other important things to pay attention to.

“The urgency for us is how to get food for our citizens to remove starvation and hunger from the land. The urgency is on how to maintain discipline in our monetary policy so that we can manage our foreign exchange rate because we are import-dependent,” the governor noted.

He claimed that the country will continue to fail if the All Progressives Congress (APC) wins next year’s election.

“We can’t allow those managing our country (APC) to continue because if we allow the APC government to continue, the country will fail as the country is already failing,” Obaseki maintained.

“God sees how people are suffering in this country and will not allow them to manage Nigeria again.”

“This 2023 election is about the continuous existence of Nigeria. If we don’t change the current leadership, I don’t know what will happen to this country. For us the PDP, we are the real only organic party. We are the only ones prepared for a free and fair election and our candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, is the most experienced,” he stated.

CBN Has My Backing On Redesigning Of Naira Notes  – Buhari 

A photo combination of President Buhari and CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari says he is fully in support of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s move to redesign the naira notes. 

The CBN had last week said it will redesign the N1,000, N500 and N200 notes, effective December 1, a development that has elicited mixed reactions.

But in a statement by his media aide Garba Shehu, the President said he is “convinced that the nation will gain a lot by doing so”.

READ ALSO: CBN Didn’t Consult Finance Ministry On Redesign Of Naira Notes – Zainab Ahmed

“Speaking in a Hausa radio interview with the famous journalist Halilu Ahmed Getso, and Kamaluddeen Sani Shawai to be aired Wednesday Morning on Tambari TV on Nilesat, President Buhari said reasons given to him by the CBN convinced him that the economy stood to benefit from the reduction in inflation, currency counterfeiting and the excess cash in circulation,” Mr Shehu said on Sunday.

“He said he did not consider the period of three months for the change to the new notes as being short.

”People with illicit money buried under the soil will have a challenge with this but workers, businesses with legitimate incomes will face no difficulties at all.”

CBN To Redesign N200, N500 And N1,000 Notes

 

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Wednesday said it will redesign the N200, N500, and N1,000 notes. 

CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, disclosed this during a special press briefing in Abuja.  The new design and issues will be effective from December 15, 2022.

The action was taken in order to take control of the currency in circulation, according to the CBN boss.

 

 

The apex bank, Emefiele stated, has secured the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to roll out new notes to replace the existing currency in circulation.

READ ALSO: Buhari Seeks Expanded Trade Relations Beyond Gas Exports To South Korea

“In line with the provisions of Sections 2(b), Section 18(a) and Section 19, Sub section(a) and (b) (2007), the management of the CBN has sought and obtained the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to redesign, produce, release and circulate new series of banknotes at N200, N500 and N1,00 levels,” he said.

“In line with this approval, we have finalised arrangements for the new currency to begin circulation from December 15, 2022 after its launch by President Buhari.

“The new and existing currencies shall remain legal tender and circulate together until January 31, 2023 when the existing currencies shall cease to be a legal tender.”

Once the new notes are designed Nigerians are expected to take old notes to banks for the new notes.

The CBN Governor is also concerned about how Nigerian currency is being stored currently.

According to him, the bulk of the nation’s currency notes was outside bank vaults and the CBN would not allow the situation to continue.

Emefiele added, “To be more specific, as of the end of September 2022, available data at the CBN indicates that N2.7 trillion out of the N3.3 trillion currency in circulation was outside the vault of commercial banks across the country and supposedly held by members of the public.

“Evidently, currency in circulation has more than doubled since 2015, rising from N1.46 trillion in December 2015 to N3.2 trillion as of September 2022. I must say that this is a worrisome trend that must not be continued to be allowed.”

According to him, the initiative by the CBN will help address some of the nation’s security threats, especially kidnapping and terrorism.

He believes that terrorists and kidnappers capitalise on the large excess of money to carry out their nefarious activities.

 

Naira: EFCC Storms Bureau De Change Hub In Abuja

EFCC news logo
A file photo of the EFCC emblem.

 

Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Friday stormed Wuse Zone 4, Abuja, home to most bureau de change operators in the Federal Capital Territory,

A source said the raid was a covert operation to dislodge currency speculators who are alleged to be massively mopping up available foreign currencies.

The raid is said to be product of weeks of surveillance in which agents of the EFCC have been monitoring the activities of most of the Bureau de change operators in the Wuse 4 axis.

READ ALSO: We Are Working To Avert Naira’s Further Fall Against Dollar, CBN Assures Nigerians

The anti- graft agency is said to be working on intelligence that some forces with massive naira inflow have mobilized resources and are busy buying up available foreign currencies especially the United States dollar, to either hoard or smuggle the same out of Nigeria.

Some operatives of the Commission have also been spotted at major airports in the country, in what a source said is a coordinated nationwide operation that will be extended to all the major commercial cities such as Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt.

There has lately been a run on the value of the Naira with the currency exchanging for over N700 to a dollar.

The EFCC spokesperson, Wilson Uwujaren, was not immediately available for comment.

Senate Summons Emefiele As Naira Continues To Depreciate Against Dollar

A file photo of Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele

 

The Senate has resolved to summon the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Godwin Emefiele, to explain the reasons for the rapid depreciation of the value of the naira.

It has also mandated its Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions to assess the impact of CBN intervention funds meant to support critical sectors of the economy.

The Upper chamber is taking these resolutions after federal legislators considered a motion on the state of CBN Intervention funds and the free fall of the naira.

The sponsor of the motion Senator Olubunmi Adetunmbi bemoaned Nigeria’s economic challenges and calls for extraordinary measures to address them.

As of Thursday morning, the naira was exchanging for more than N700 to a dollar in the parallel markets.

No Plans To Withdraw Naira Notes From Circulation – CBN

 

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has dismissed reports that it intends to replace the naira notes in circulation with digital currency, the eNaira, in due course. 

CBN Director, Corporate Communication, Mr Osita Nwanisobi, said in a statement on Saturday that the reports were false.

According to him, the comment purportedly made during a stakeholders’ engagement in Asaba, Delta State on eNaira adoption, and on which the reports were based, was misconstrued.

He called on the general public to disregard the reports.

The CBN director explained the digital version of the naira was meant to complement the existing currency notes and therefore, would circulate simultaneously as means of exchange and store of value.

Mr Nwanisabi touted the benefits of the eNaira, stressing that apart from it safety and speed of use, it will give the underbanked and unbanked populace greater access to financial services, enhancing financial inclusion.

He urged members of the public and business owners to embrace the digital currency as it offers more possibilities.

The eNaira was formally launched into circulation by President Muhammadu Buhari in October last year.

Lawmakers Seek Re-Introduction Of Coins To Tackle Inflation

The House of Representatives chamber.

 

The House of Representatives has asked the Central Bank of Nigeria to reinforce the use of coins in the country, as part of efforts to tackle price inflation and stabilise the economy.

The matter was deliberated upon during plenary on Tuesday following a motion moved by a lawmaker, representing Toro Federal Constituency in Bauchi State, Umar Lawal.

It’s been decades since the use of coins was withdrawn in Nigeria.

I Am Not Calling For Naira Devaluation – Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo SAN delivers a speech during the Two-Day Mid-Term Ministerial Performance Review Retreat in the State House, Abuja on October 11, 2021. Photos: Tolani Alli
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo SAN delivers a speech during the Two-Day Mid-Term Ministerial Performance Review Retreat in the State House, Abuja on October 11, 2021. Photos: Tolani Alli

 

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said that he is not calling for the devaluation of the naira contrary to some reports that trailed his speech at the opening session of the mid-term ministerial performance review retreat at the presidential villa, Abuja on Monday.

Osinbajo in a statement issued by his spokesman, Laolu Akande, on Tuesday said he rather advocates a forex policy to curb corruption.

While noting that he has been opposed to the devaluation of the currency, the Vice President said those who have access to the dollars at N410 turn round to sell it were benefiting from the current exchange rate.

“Prof. Osinbajo is not calling for the devaluation of the Naira. He has at all times argued against a willy-nilly devaluation of the Naira,” the statement read.

“For context, the Vice President’s point was that currently, the Naira exchange rate benefits only those who are able to obtain the dollar at N410, some of who simply turn round and sell to the parallel market at N570.

“It is stopping this huge arbitrage of over N160 per dollar that the Vice President was talking about. Such a massive difference discourages doing proper business, when selling the dollar can bring in 40% profit!”

READ ALSO: How We Intend To Build A More Resilient Economy – Buhari

He also revealed the major issues confronting the Nigerian economy, stressing that how to improve the supply of foreign exchange is the major challenge facing the country’s economy.

Osinbajo explained that allowing the window of import and export would help improve the value of the naira.

“The real issue confronting the economy on this matter is how to improve the supply of foreign exchange, but this will not happen if we do not allow mechanisms like the Importers and Exporters window to work. If we allow this market mechanism to work as intended, we will find that the Naira will appreciate against the dollar as we restore confidence in the system,” he added.

CBN Warns Against Naira Abuse, Threatens To Prosecute Offenders

A file photo of naira notes.

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned Nigerians against abusing naira notes, especially at social gatherings.

Acting Director of Corporate Communications at the apex bank, Osita Nwanisobi, gave the warning in a statement on Tuesday.

“The attention of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has again been drawn to the activities of persons, who flagrantly abuse the legal tender by hurling wads of naira notes in the air and stamping on the currency at social functions,” he said.

“There have also been cases where people mishandle the naira, deface it, hawk the currency at parties and reject the currency in some instances.

“It should be stated that, contrary to the practice of these unpatriotic persons, it is neither cultural nor moral, for people to disrespect the currency which citizens trade in.”

The abuse of legal tender is common during social gatherings such as birthdays, weddings, and funerals where people spray naira notes to rejoice with celebrants.

This has now become a major source of concern for the nation’s financial regulator which says it will prosecute offenders in accordance with the law.

“For the avoidance of doubt, Section 21(3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007 (as amended) stipulates that ‘spraying of, dancing or matching on the naira or any note issued by the bank during social occasions or otherwise howsoever shall constitute an abuse and defacing of the naira or such note, and shall be punishable under the law by fines or imprisonment or both,” Nwanisobi stated.

According to him, the apex bank is collaborating with the Nigeria Police, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) to tackle the trend.

The CBN spokesman, therefore, warned Nigerians, especially those at social functions to desist from disrespecting the naira or risk being arrested by law enforcement agencies.

He described naira notes as Nigeria’s legal tender and symbol of national pride that must be respected and handled with care.