Emefiele says the CBN won’t postpone the January 31, 2023 deadline for the validity of the old N200, N500 and N1,000 notes.
The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele says the redesign of some naira notes has somehow addressed kidnapping and ransom-taking by kidnappers in the country.
Emefiele said this on Tuesday, January 24, 2023, after the apex bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting in Abuja.
He insisted that the CBN would not postpone the January 31, 2023 deadline for the validity of the old N200, N500, and N1,000 notes.
“Truly speaking, at the margin, I may be wrong, I think kidnapping and ransom-taking have somehow reduced. Security agents are doing a fantastic job.
“I think it (naira redesign) has slowed those people down because they know that if they collect old notes, nobody is going to collect it from them. So, it might as well as think of other ways,” he said.
Speaking on the raise in the interest rate, Emefiele said the increase in the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) from 16.5% to 17.5 percent to tame inflation was meant to tame inflation.
He said some Nigerians are hoarding the currency, adding that no Nigerian is allowed to build bank vaults at home.
He added that is no reason for the nation’s currency in circulation to rise from N1.4 trillion to N3.2 trillion in seven years.
Emefiele said: “There is no reason why currency in circulation will grow from N1.4 trillion to N3.2 trillion in seven years.
“People are hoarding it, people are keeping vaults in their homes. We cannot allow them to be banks in their homes; they don’t have the license to build bank vaults in their homes.
“They should release that money back to CBN because what they are doing is that they are undermining monetary policy. They are keeping it and speculating against our currency and it is making our work difficult in CBN.”
According to him, the CBN has 1.4 million agents nationwide to collect old naira notes in exchange for new notes in riverine and upland areas.