Nigerians in the rural areas have no need to panic over how they will access the new naira notes against the January 31, 2023 deadline when the old currencies will cease from acceptance as valid legal tender, the Central Bank of Nigeria has assured.
The CBN states this on Friday in Abuja when it pledged to launch a cash swap programme in rural and underserved areas of the country on Monday to boost collection of the redesigned naira notes.
The bank, in a statement jointly signed by its Director, Banking Supervision Department, Malam Haruna Mustapha and Director, Payment System Management Department, Malam Musa Jimoh said the launch was informed by the need to maximise the channels through which underserved and rural communities could exchange their naira notes.
The CBN noted that the launch would hold in partnership with Deposit Money Banks, DMBs, with super agents.
“It enables citizens in rural areas or those with limited access to formal financial services to exchange old naira notes for the redesigned ones.
“The old N1,000, N500 and N200 notes can be exchanged for the redesigned notes or existing lower denominations of N100, N50 and N20 which remain legal tender.
“The super agents can exchange a maximum of N10,000 per person, while amounts above N10,000 shall be treated as cash-in deposit into wallets or bank accounts in line with the cashless policy.
“Bank Verification Number, National Identification Number or Voter’s Card details of the customer should be captured as much as possible,’’ the bank stated.
It added that it had mandated DMBs to ensure issuance of the new notes strictly through Automated Teller Machines.
The CBN also stated that the mandate was to ensure that distribution of the new currency notes is fair, transparent, and evenly spread across the country.
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, has set up a six- member committee to engage the CBN on addressing anomalies in the country’s monetary management and financial system.
The forum disclosed this in a communique issued on Saturday at the end of its virtual meeting held with the CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, on Thursday night.
The committee, according to the communique signed by NGF Chairman, Gov. Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, is chaired by Governor of Anambra State, Prof. Charles Soludo, with governors of Akwa Ibom, Ogun, Borno, Plateau and Jigawa states as members.
The governors said that while they were not opposed to the objectives of the Naira redesign policy, but noted that the apex bank should consider the peculiarities of households and states, especially pertaining to financial inclusion and under-served locations.
“We, the members of the NGF, received a briefing from the Governor of the CBN, Emefiele, on the Naira redesign, its economic and security implications including the new withdrawal policy.
“Governors are not opposed to the objectives of the Naira redesign policy. However, we observe that there are huge challenges that remain problematic to the Nigerian populace.
“In the circumstances, governors expressed the need for the CBN to consider the peculiarities of states especially as they pertained to financial inclusion and under-served locations.”
The governors expressed resolve to work closely with the CBN leadership to ameliorate areas that required policy variation, particularly the poorest households, the vulnerable in society and several other Nigerians that were excluded.
The governors also resolved to collaborate with the CBN and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit, NFIU, in advancing genuine objectives within the confines of the laws.
They, however, insisted that the recent NFIU Advisory and Guidelines on cash transactions were simply outside the NFIU’s legal remit and mandate.