President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday directed the Central Bank Of Nigeria (CBN) that only the old N200 naira notes should be released into circulation for the next sixty days.
In a state broadcast, the president said the old N200 notes will co-exist with the new notes from February 10 to April 10.
He said it became imperative to cushion the hardships being experienced by citizens following the implementation of the new monetary policy of the CBN.
Buhari said the approval followed “wide consultations with relevant stakeholders including the representatives of state governors, the Council of State as well as the pronouncements of the Supreme Court.”
By the presidential order the old N500 and N1000 notes have ceased to be legal tender and can only be deposited at designated centers approved by the CBN.
The president listed the gains of the ongoing financial reforms embarked upon by the apex bank and blamed some “unscrupulous bank officials” for some of the hardships being experienced by Nigerians.
He directed the CBN to deploy all legitimate resources and legal means to ensure that citizens are adequately educated on the new policy, and enjoy easy access to cash withdrawal through the availability of an appropriate amount of currency, and the ability to make deposits.
Buhari also ordered the CBN to intensify collaboration with anti-corruption agencies in checking the activities of those who were bent on sabotaging the smooth implementation of the new Naira redesign policy.
He reassured that government would continue to assess the implementation of the policy with a view to ensuring that Nigerians are not unnecessarily burdened while urging the CBN to ensure the availability of the new Naira notes across the country.
Buhari, however, called for more understanding from Nigerians while reiterating the commitment of his administration to hand over a “financially stable economy” to the incoming administration on May 29, 2023.