The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed commercial banks across the country to remain open on Saturdays until January 31, 2023, to allow bank customers to exchange old naira notes for new ones.
This was disclosed by Osita Nwasinobi, the Director of the Corporate Communications Department of the apex bank.
He also reiterated that the new and existing currencies would remain legal tender and will be circulated alongside each other until January 31, 2023, when the existing currency would cease to be legal tender in Nigeria.
The CBN position: Nwasinobi, who was represented by Mr Akpama Uket, CBN’s Acting Director of Corporate Communications, added that Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) have been directed to immediately start returning the existing currencies to the CBN.
“They have also been instructed to receive the existing banknotes beyond the threshold stipulated by the Cashless Policy without charges to customers.
Consequently, you must return all the current N200, N500 and N1,000 banknotes to your bank before the expiration of the deadline,” he said.
The CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele had explained that the decision to redesign the naira notes was done to ensure macroeconomic stability.
He said the goal was to create a strong, stable, and resilient economy that is self-sustaining and capable of weathering unexpected shocks.
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“The bank will achieve this by applying appropriate monetary policy tools, reining inflation and continuously encouraging a productive economy through interventions.
The naira remains a symbol of our national pride. Treat it with utmost dignity. Do not spray, squeeze or counterfeit the Naira, as default goes with consequences,” Nwasinobi reiterated.