Banks will accept rested notes after February 10 deadline – Emefiele


THE Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has assured Nigerians that banks will continue to accept the N1000, N500 and N200 notes being rested after the February 10 deadline.

Emefiele gave the assurance today when he appeared before the House of Representatives ad hoc committee on the currency redesign and naira swap policy.

The House had last week invited the CBN governor for discussions as worries mounted across the country over scarcity of the redesigned N1000, N500 and N200 notes and the January 31 deadline dawned.

When Emefiele failed to honour the invitation last Thursday, the House Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, threatened to arrest him.

Emefiele, however, announced a 10-day extension to the deadline, with the old notes acceptable as legal tender till February 10.

The CBN governor, interacting with the legislators today, made reference to the CBN Act which mandates the apex bank to continue to accept old notes after their legal tender expiration.

Section 20 (3) of the CBN Act states: ‘Notwithstanding sub-sections (1) and (2) of this section, the bank shall have power, if directed to do so by the president and after giving reasonable notice in that behalf, to call in any of its notes or coins on payment of the face value thereof, and any note or coin with respect to which a notice has been given under this sub-section, shall, on the expiration of the notice, cease to be legal tender, but, subject to section 22 of this act, shall be redeemed by the bank upon demand.

Emefiele explained that even after the old currency had lost its legal tender status, the CBN is mandated to collect them.

“I stand with the House of Representatives on this. What does that mean? It could (old notes) have lost its legal tender status, which means we have moved on. But if you have your money that you have not been able to send to the bank, we will certainly give you the opportunity to bring them back into the CBN to redeem it. Either you pay it to your bank account or you want to do exchange, we will give you. You will not lose your money. This is the assurance I give to Nigerians,” he said.


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