UPDATED: CBN Shifts Deadline For Old Naira Notes Withdrawal To February 10
The Central Bank of Nigeria has extended the deadline for the withdrawal of old notes to February 10, 2023.
Confirming this to THE WHISTLER on Sunday, the CBN Director of Corporate Communications, Osita Nwanisoba, said “we have extended the deadline.”
The development follows pressure from the National Assembly, political parties, civil society organisations and millions of Nigerians who complained that the window to return the old notes was too short.
The initial deadline fixed by the apex bank to withdraw the old N1,000, N500 and N200 notes was January 31st, 2023.
But the bank added an additional 10 days to allow Nigerians to meet up with the date.
The CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, while briefing newsmen said Nigerians have one week grace period to deposit their old notes after the February 10 deadline.
But the bank said the notes will have to be deposited at CBN bank branches.
He said, “Based on the foregoing, we have today sorted and obtained Mr president’s approval for the following: A 10-day extension of the deadline from January 31, 2023 to February 10, 2023 to allow for the collection of more old notes legitimately held by Nigerians and achieve more success in cash swap in our rural areas, in our villages and communities, after which all old notes after the CBN losses their legal tender status.
“A seven-day grace period beginning on February 10 to February 17, 2023, in compliance with Section 20 (3) and Section 22 of the CBN Act allowing Nigerians to deposit their old notes at the CBN after the February deadline when the old currency would have lost its legal tender status.”
Emefiele further revealed that the programme has achieved 75 per cent success as N1.9trn out of the N2.5trn in circulation has been received by the apex bank.
“Like you can see I have just ended a meeting with Mr President. The purpose of the meeting is to provide Mr president with an update on the implementation status of the CBN currency redesign programme currently going on across the Federation.
“Indeed, let me re-emphasise that only an incorruptible leader of the president’s status can give such approval to the CBN. From the onset of this currency redesign programme, we made it clear that for 19 years, the CBN hasn’t been able to conduct this important aspect of its mandate.
“We aim to support the efforts of our security agencies in combating insurgency and ransome taking in Nigeria through this programme and we can see that the military are making good progress in this important task in Nigeria.
“So far and since the commencement of this programme, we have collected about N1.9trn leaving us with about N900bn to N1trn to be collected.
“Asides from those holding illicit and stolen naira in their homes for speculative purposes, we do aim to give all Nigerians that have naira legitimately earned and trapped the opportunity to deposit their legitimately trapped monies by the CBN for exchange.”