No less than 13 Naira note sellers who turned deaf ears to warnings by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have landed themselves in the soup following a sting operation jointly carried out by operatives of the Police and Department of State Services (DSS) in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Recall that the CBN had times without number warned that Section 21 (1) of the CBN Act (2007) forbids any person from selling the Naira notes.
“It shall be an offence punishable by a term of imprisonment not less than 5 years for any person to falsify, make or counterfeit any Bank note or coin issued by the Bank which is a legal tender in Nigeria,” Section 20 (4) of the Act stipulates.
Whereas Section 21(1) states that it is “an offence punishable for any person to hawk, sell, or trade in the Naira notes, coins or any other note issued by the Bank.”
The Police Public Relations Officer, Rivers State Command, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Nnamdi Omoni, told newsmen that the sting operation was carried out to check the illicit sale of Naira notes in the state.
Omoni said the 13 suspects, all women, were arrested in different parts of Port-Harcourt and are currently being interrogated at the State CID.
The State PRO disclosed that the sum of N2,937,430 comprising various denominations was recovered from the arrested persons.
“The acts of spraying the naira notes at occasions, soiling and writing on them, mutilation, squeezing, as well as hawking and selling the Naira notes, are forms of abuses of the Naira as such should be discouraged by all,” he explained.