President Muhammadu Buhari, over the weekend promised to protect Nigerians, their businesses and the entire supply chain from disruptions arising from the ongoing naira swap.
Reacting to criticisms and reports of long queues of people waiting for hours to swap old notes for new ones, the President noted that the new currency policy was targeted at those illegally hoarding the naira rather than the ordinary man.
President Buhari further explained that the redesign of currency was necessary to prevent counterfeits, corruption, and terrorist funding adding that the scheme will stabilize and strengthen the nation’s economy.
He, however, acknowledged that the poorest section of Nigerian society is most affected by the hitches in the process as they often prefer to keep cash at home for various expenditures, and promised to protect their interest.
President Buhari assured that a number of initiatives by the Central Bank and all commercial banks are underway to speed up distribution of the new notes and do all that is necessary to forestall cash squeeze and chaos.
Meanwhile, following the approval of the president the Central bank of Nigeria (CBN) has extended the deadline for the new currency swap from January 31, 2023 to February 10, 2023.
According to a statement signed by the CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, the ten days extension will allow the banks collect more old naira notes legally held by Nigerians especially those in the rural communities.