BY Desmond Okon
President Muhammadu Buhari has announced the extension of the validity of old N200 notes till April 10.
TheCable, on Wednesday, reported that the president was considering the extension, given the adverse impacts of the naira redesign policy on Nigerians.
Announcing the development in a televised nationwide address on Thursday, the president said all existing old N1000 and N500 notes remain redeemable at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and designated points.
“To further ease the supply pressures, particularly to our citizens, I have given approval to the CBN that the old N200 bank notes be released back into circulation and that it should also be allowed to circulate as legal tender with the new N200, N500, and N1000 banknotes for 60 days from February 10, 2023 to April 10 2023 when the old N200 notes ceases to be legal tender,” the president said.
The president said he listened to various stakeholders and consulted widely over the hardship suffered by Nigerians as a result of the weeks-long scarcity of naira notes.
He said their counsel informed his decision to make concessions on the matter.
“Considering the health of our economy and the legacy we must bequeath to the next administration and future generations of Nigerians, I admonish every citizen to strive harder to make their deposits by taking advantage of the platforms and windows being provided by the CBN,” he said.
“Let me assure Nigerians that our administration will continue to assess the implementation with a view to ensuring that Nigerians are not unnecessarily burdened. In this regard, the CBN shall ensure that new notes become more available and accessible to our citizens through the banks.
“I wish to once more appeal for your understanding till we overcome this difficult transient phase within the shortest possible time.”
The president described the naira redesign policy as a “positive departure from the past”, adding that it represents a “bold legacy step” of his administration towards laying a strong foundation for free and fair elections.