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Buhari says old currency notes swap targeted at cash hoarders not businesses

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President Muhammadu Buhari said on Saturday that the federal government will ensure that citizens’ businesses are “unharmed” and that no disruption is caused to the entire supply-chain following the ongoing currency swap.

Buhari explained that the currency swap is targeted at people hoarding illicit funds and not the common man.

He spoke against the backdrop of reports of long queues of people spending hours to swap old notes for new ones.

In a statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, the president said it had become imperative to prevent counterfeits, corruption, and terrorist funding, assuring that the change will help stabilize and strengthen the economy.

Nothing that the poor people are facing hardship as they usually keep cash at home for their daily transactions, Buhari assured that his administration government will take care of them.

According to him, several initiatives by the Central Bank and commercial banks are underway to speed up distribution of the new notes to forestall cash squeeze in the economy.

In a related development, a clarion call has been made by the Presidential Candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to extend the January 31 deadline for the deposit of old notes of N200, N500 and N1,000 denominations.

“I’m aware of the challenges that farmers and others, like artisans, in remote areas of the country go through in moving cash from remote areas to commercial banks for conversion.

“On this note, I’m compelled to align my position with the upsurge of demands for a ‘slight extension’ of the monetary conversion policy.

“The January 31st deadline is certainly going to cause heavy discomfort on our people and it will be magnanimous on the part of government and regulatory agency to ease the burden on the people in the public interest,” Atiku said in a video posted on Twitter on Saturday.

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