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February 20, 2023

Naira redesign: CBN withdrew N2trn, printed only N400bn – El-Rufai

Naira scarcity: El-Rufai is hero of the moment - Fani-Kayode

El-Rufai

Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna state has accused the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, of withdrawing N2 trillion from circulation and replacing the old notes by minting only N400 billion.

El-Rufai made this allegation in a tweet via his verified Twitter handle, on Sunday. 

He said the apex bank only confiscated the currency as against what was obtainable in the currency swap policy.

His tweet reads, “During the implementation of the cash swap, the CBN withdrew over N2 trillion from circulation but printed only N400 billion, so in effect, currency confiscation was then unilaterally and unlawfully implemented by the CBN. Trade and exchange have collapsed. Human suffering, impoverishment, and economic contraction resulted.

“The policy objective was derailed into a deliberate national fiasco to sabotage the elections to prevent vote-buying. All efforts to get CBN to implement what was lawfully approved failed.”

The governor claimed that President Muhammadu Buhari approved redesigning of the naira, but the CBN did something different, regarding the redesigning and swapping of the currency.

According to El-Rufai, President Buhari approved redesigning the N200, N500, and N1000 notes, whereas the CBN only did recolour.

He stated, “Currency redesign was approved by the President and announced. Currency recoloring resulted.

“Currency swap was envisaged by s.20(3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act as approved by PMB. Swap means I take N100,000 to the bank in old notes & I receive N100,000 immediately in new notes. No more, no less.”

Recall that the naira crisis peaked last Thursday after the President’s national broadcast,  which countered the Supreme Court by extending the validity of old N200 notes, while insisting that old N500 and N1,000 remained illegal.

Buhari urged Nigerians to deposit their old N500 and 1000 notes with the CBN, adding that  the old N200 note would be legal tender for the next 60 days till April 10.