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Supreme Court Orders Suspension Of Deadline For Old Naira Notes

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Supreme Court on Wednesday instructed a suspension of the deadline for the swapping of old to new Naira notes by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). The Supreme Court issued an interim injunction restraining the Federal Government from suspending the acceptance of the old Naira notes no the Friday February 10, 2023 deadline. A seven-man panel of the Supreme Court led by Justice John Okoro, in a unanimous ruling, granted an interim injunction restraining the FG, CBN, commercial banks, from implementing the February 10, deadline for the old 200, 500, and 1000 Naira notes to stop being a legal tender.

Three northern states, Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara, had in a motion ex-parte filed on February 3rd, prayed the apex court to halt the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) naira redesign policy.

Moving the application on Wednesday, counsel to the applicants, Mr. A. I. Mustapha, SAN, had encouraged the apex court to grant the application in the interest of justice and the well-being of Nigeria.

He noted that the policy of the government had led to an “excruciating situation that is almost leading to anarchy in the land.”

The states explained that there has been acute shortage of the new naira notes in Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara States and that citizens who have dutifully deposited their old naira notes have increasingly found it tough to access the new naira notes to enable them conduct their daily activities.

The court in continuation held that the federal government, CBN, commercial banks must not continue with the deadline pending the determination of a notice on notice on in respect of the issue on February 15.

The case has been adjourned to Wednesday, February 15, 2023, for hearing of the main suit.