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Your current naira notes will become outdated by February, 2023—CBN warns Nigerians

Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele
—–as new redesigned Naira notes hit circulation in December, 2022
The Eyewitness reporter
The Central Bank of Nigeria ( CBN) has asked Nigerians and other residents in the country who hold the Naira currencies to immediately approach their banks to deposit them in exchange for new crisp and redesigned Naira notes.
In a press release personally signed by the Governor of CBN, Mr. Goodwin Emefiele Tuesday, the apex bank disclosed that by January 31st, 2023, the existing Naira notes will cease to be a legal tender in the country.
The decision, according to Emefiele, was based on the decision of the apex bank to redesign the naira notes due to the massive abuse of the existing ones which have serially been subjected to counterfeiting.
Consequently, the CBN Governor disclosed that the newly redesigned notes will hit circulation from December 15th, 2022.
He, therefore, advised holders of the existing notes to start approaching their banks to deposit them in exchange for the new ones.
At the press conference in Abuja Tuesday, Emefiele said the CBN has sought and secured the approval of President Mohammed Buhari for these changes.
He lamented that the existing Nigeria currencies, especially N500 and N1000 notes, have over the years been subjected to massive counterfeiting by unscrupulous characters who carried out this despicable act with finesse and a high level of sophistication due to recent development in photographic technology and advancements in printing devices.
Emefiele also claimed that more than 80 percent of naira currencies in circulation are outside the banking system.
He also said the existing notes have suffered serious mutilation and abuse, all of which made it imperative for the CBN to take this action.
He, therefore, advised all the Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) to immediately return all the existing Naira currencies in their vaults to the CBN in exchange for the newly redesigned notes as distribution will be based on a first come first serve basis.
Part of the statement reads
“We have called this gathering to inform relevant stakeholders and the general public of persisting concerns we are facing with

the management of our current series of banknotes, and currency in circulation, particularly those outside the banking system in Nigeria.

“As you all may be aware, currency management is a key function of the Central Bank of Nigeria, as enshrined in Section 2 (b) of the CBN Act 2007.
“Indeed, the integrity of a local legal tender, the efficiency of its supply, as well as its efficacy in the conduct of monetary policy are some of the hallmarks of a great Central Bank.

“In recent times, however, currency management has faced several daunting challenges that have continued to grow in scale and sophistication with attendant and unintended consequences for the integrity of both the CBN
and the country.
“These challenges primarily include:
# Significant hoarding of banknotes by members of the public, with statistics showing that over 80
percent of currency in circulation is outside the vaults of commercial banks,
# The worsening shortage of clean and fit banknotes with the attendant negative perception of the CBN and increased risk to financial stability;
# Increasing ease and risk of counterfeiting evidenced by several security reports.
“Indeed, recent development in photographic technology and advancements in printing devices have made counterfeiting relatively easier.
” In recent years, the CBN has recorded significantly higher rates of counterfeiting especially at the higher denominations of
N500 and N1,000 banknotes.
“Although global best practice is for central banks to redesign, produce and circulate new local legal tender every 5–8 years, the Naira has not been redesigned in the last 20 years.
“On the basis of these trends, problems, and facts, and in line with Sections 19, subsections a and b of the CBN Act 2007, the Management of the CBN sought and obtained the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to redesign, produce, and circulate new series of banknotes at N100, N200, N500, and N1,000 levels.
“In line with this approval, we have finalized arrangements for the new currency to begin circulation
from December 15, 2022.
”The new and existing currencies shall remain legal tender and circulate together until January 31, 2023, when the existing currencies shall cease to be legal tender.
”Accordingly, all Deposit Money Banks currently holding the existing denominations of the currency may begin returning these notes back to the CBN effective immediately.
”The newly designed currency will be released to the banks on an order of First-come-First serve basis.
“Customers of banks are enjoined to begin paying into their bank accounts the existing currency to enable them to withdraw the new banknotes once circulation begins in mid-December 2022.

“All banks are therefore expected to keep open, their currency processing centers from Monday to Saturday so as to accommodate all cash that will be returned by their customers.

“For the purpose of this transition from existing to new notes, bank charges for cash deposits are hereby
suspended with immediate effect.

” Therefore, DMBs are to note that no bank customer shall bear any charges for
cash returned/paid into their accounts.
”Members of the public are to please note that the present notes remain legal tender and should not be rejected as a means of exchange for the purchase of goods and services.
“We would like to use this opportunity to reassure the general public that the CBN would continue to monitor both the financial system in particular, and the economy in general, and always act in good faith for the achievement of the Bank’s objectives and the betterment of the country.”
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Economy

CBN succumbs  to pressure, extends use of old naira notes to February 10

The Eyewitness reporter
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has finally caved in to Public outcry over the February 1st deadline for the use of old naira notes when on Sunday, the apex bank announced February 10 as the new date.
Announcing the new deadline in a statement, Governor Central Bank Of Nigeria(CBN), Godwin Emefiele, said the decision to add extra 10 days was “to allow for the collection of more old notes”

Up till Saturday, CBN had insisted on the 31st January deadline for the validity of the old N200, N500 and N1,000 despite overwhelming complaints that the notes are either not available or in short supply in the banks or their Automated Teller Machines.

Last October, Emefiele announced the Naira redesign policy which entails the issuance of new notes to replace the existing N200, N500 and N1,000 series.

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Economy

CBN reverses itself on cash withdrawal limits as Emefiele succumbs to pressure

Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele

 

—now pegs weekly withdrawal for individual to N500,000, Corporate N5million

The Eyewitness Reporter

The Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN) may have succumbed to pressure from the National Assembly and other rich Nigerians as it has reversed itself on its earlier cash withdrawal limits for individuals and corporate organisations.

In a circular number BSD/DIR/PUB/LAB/015/073 dated December 21st, 2022 and addressed to all Deposit Money Banks(DMBS) and other financial institutions, the apex bank disclosed that the new weekly cash withdrawal limits for both the individuals and corporate organisations have now been reviewed to N500,000 and N5million respectively.

The new weekly cash withdrawal limits now superseded the earlier one released on December 6th, 2022 which were put at N100,000 for individuals and N500,000 for corporate organisations.

In the new revised cash withdrawal limits, the CBN claimed the revision of the policy was in response to feedback from the stakeholders.

The new revised policy also slashed the processing fees for amounts above the approved threshold from an initial 5 percent for individuals to 3 percent and for corporate organisations from 10 percent to 5 percent.

The circular, which was signed by Haruna Mustafa, the Director of Banking supervision, the CBN said the new revised cash withdrawal policy takes effect from January, 9th,2022.

”Following our circular BSD/DIR/PUB/LAB/015/069 dated December 6, 2022, on the above subject and based on feedback received from stakeholders, the Central Bank Of Nigeria(CBN) hereby makes the following reviews;

–the maximum weekly limit for cash withdrawal across all channels by individuals and corporate organisations shall be N500,000 and N5 million respectively.

–In compelling circumstances where cash withdrawal above the limits in (1) above is required for legitimate purposes, such requests shall be subject to a processing fee of 3 percent and 5 percent for individuals and corporate organisations respectively.

–Futrher to (2) above, the financial institution shall obtain the following information from the Customer, at the minimum,and upload same on the CBN portal created for the purpose

a. Valid means of identification of the payee(National ID, International passport, or driver’s license)

b.Bank Verification Number(BVN) of the payee.

c.Tax Identification Number(TIN) of both the payee and the payer.

d. Approval in writing by the MD/CEO of the financial institution authorising the withdrawal.

–Third-party cheques above N100,000 shall not be eligible for payment over the counter, while the extant limit of N10 million on clearing cheques still subsists.

—Monthly returns on cash withdrawal transactions above the specified limits should be rendered to the banking supervision, Other financial institution supervision and Payment System Management  Departments as applicable

—Compliance with extant AML/CFT regulations relating to KYC, ongoing customer due diligence, currency and suspicious transaction reporting, etc is mandatory in all circumstances.

—Customers should be encouraged to use alternative channels(internet banking, mobile banking apps, USSD, cards/POS, eNaira,gets) to conduct their banking transactions”, the circular reads.

The CBN however warned all the banks and OFIS that aiding and abetting the circumvention of this policy will attract severe sanctions.

It could be recalled that the policy, which was first announced on December 6th, 2022, generated mixed reactions, especially from the members of the National Assembly who invited the CBN Governor. Godwin Emefiele to come and explain the rationale behind the cash withdrawal limits.

Twice, the National Assembly invited Mr. Emefiele, but twice, he did not appear, citing national assignment engagement as the reason for his non-appearance.

The review may, however, be as a result of the intense pressure that the CBN governor has lately been subjected to as a result of this policy which analysts believed does not favour the elites, the politicians and the rich Nigerians, especially giving the forthcoming elections.

 

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Economy

ICT media chiefs launch foundation to drive advocacy, development

Bimbo Tooki
Abiodun Bayo
Top ICT media practitioners and pioneers in Nigeria have launched a Foundation known as Cloud Network Foundation, (CNF), to drive advocacy for skills acquisition and capacity building among youths and push for policy that encourages local content in ICT development in Nigeria.
The Foundation, made of the first eleven in ICT journalism in Nigeria, is worried that, among others, policy direction and implementation in the country has primarily neglected local content development and the creation of the requisite skills and enablement for Nigeria’s teeming youth to excel in the ICT ecosystem.
Chairman of the Foundation, Mr. Abimbola Tooki, who remarked at the body’s inaugural meeting, said Nigeria has so much untapped potential that, when harnessed by the provision of the right policies and strategies, could replicate another Silicon Valley in California, the United States to Bangalore in India.
“We can move from a consuming nation to a producing one in a few years in the ICT ecosystem, and over 20 million of our youths can be lifted out of poverty every year if they have the right information, guidance, enabling environment and skills at their disposal if we take the right steps”, Tooki said.
 He said if the government prioritised integrating technology (ICT) infrastructure into public service delivery to promote growth-oriented policies, it would be easier for all tiers and arms of government to collaborate to pull Nigerians out of poverty.
The Cloud Network Foundation promises to provide an influential voice for stakeholders in the media, business community and government on the benefits of ICT in economic growth and national development.
It will also promote multidisciplinary collaboration and interdisciplinary initiatives on ICT to foster the creation, usage and sharing of knowledge in the fields of ICT for national development.
Also speaking at the body’s inauguration, Vice Chairman of the Foundation, Mr. Don Pedro Aganbi further said industry stakeholders should look forward to the Foundation’s resolve to ensure a more active ICT industry in Nigeria.
Meanwhile, the CNF announced in the statement that as the election produced the Chairman and Vice Chairman, the group also elected the following officials: Olubayo Abiodun (Secretary); Ufuoma Emuophedaro, (Treasurer) and Ayo Makinde, as  Publicity Secretary.
Aganbi said CNF would ensure that all operators wake up to their responsibilities of delivering quality services to Nigerians while fostering a friendly environment for all.
Other members of the fully registered non-political, non-religious and non-profit organisation include award-winning and pioneering ICT journalists such as Mr. Aaron Ukodie, Mkpe Abang, Bayero Agabi, Bunmi Idowu, Enyi Moses, Ken Nwogbo, Shina Badaru, Biyi Fasoyin, Tayo Adewusi, and Otunba Biodun Ajiboye, among others.
The CNF stated that it will also work with educational institutions at all levels in advancing the usage and adoption of ICT in learning and educational endeavours, and providing an effective voice for stakeholders in the media, business community and government on the benefits of ICT in economic growth and national development.
It will also promote research in diverse segments of ICT, develop professionals in ICT Journalism, and promote multidisciplinary collaboration and interdisciplinary initiatives on ICT to foster the creation, usage and sharing of knowledge in the fields of ICT for national development.
Cloud Network Foundation has an active online presence, with a dedicated website (cloudnetwork.ng), twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
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