Old naira notes to be used till Feb 15 as FG vows to obey Supreme Court order
Nigerians are free to continue using the old naira notes till Wednesday, February 15, 2023, when the supreme court order suspending the implementation of the cash swap policy will elapse.
The Central Bank of Nigeria had previously set Friday, February 10, 2023, as the date by which the country’s old naira notes will expire.
But on February 8, 2023, the Supreme Court struck down the CBN’s action, days after the governments of Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara states took the Federal Government to court to contest the policy.
Abubakar Malami, the Attorney-General of the Federation, filed a preliminary objection after the verdict, contesting the court’s authority to hear the case.
On Thursday, Malami said on Arise TV that the federal government would abide by the order in accordance with the law.
He added that the Federal Government and CBN must abide by the Supreme Court’s decision and that the government will fight the order on Wednesday and urge that it be overturned.
He declared, “The highest court approved the order, and it will expire on Wednesday, the day of the hearing. In light of this stance, we have taken action to submit an objection that contests the court’s authority to hear the case.
“Jurisdiction on the grounds that the Central Bank is an integral and required party for that matter when you talk about monetary policy regardless of the characters they adopt.
We have a situation where the Central Bank has not been added as a party, and the statute clearly states that the Supreme Court’s original jurisdiction cannot be properly exercised without the Central Bank being added as a party.
“We have therefore taken into account a variety of problems, including the question of jurisdiction, and on Wednesday we will argue the case, among others, from that perspective.
“There is no question that the supreme court’s decision is final and binding regardless of the current situation, and within the framework of the rule of law, you can also take actions that are permissible under the spirit and circumstances of the rule of law. What we are doing, in essence, is compliance with the rule of law both in terms of adhering to the decision and challenging it by presenting our own arguments.
“So the question of obeying the supreme court’s decision is irrelevant; we firmly believe that we are bound by it and will act accordingly. However, in the course of acting appropriately, we will contest the decision by submitting an application asking for its annulment.
In accordance with the rights and privileges granted to us as a government, we are equally considering challenging the order and seeking its annulment. “The rule of law provides that there must be obedience to the judgment and orders of the supreme court, the rule of law provides that when you are not happy with a ruling you can file an application for setting aside.
As a result of the policy’s too-short transition period, the World Bank has encouraged the Central Bank of Nigeria to increase the time restriction for naira note swaps.
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