Despite Supreme Court Order, Nigerians Reject Old Naira Notes

Despite a temporary suspension of the ban on old Naira notes ordered by the Supreme Court, many business operators in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have started rejecting them.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had initially announced a deadline of January 31st for the use of old notes after redesigning N200, N500, and N1000 notes.

However, following public outcry, the deadline was extended to February 10th by the apex Nigerian bank before being suspended by the Supreme Court until February 15th.

It was discovered that old notes were being rejected in public places such as fueling stations, marketplaces, and motor parks.

A commercial driver, Ndubuisi Ugwu, stated that he had started rejecting old notes because fueling stations had begun doing the same.

He said, “I went to fuel my car at the station with the old notes and it was rejected.

“That is why I am insisting on passengers boarding with new notes.”

On the Supreme Court Order, Ugwu said he was aware of it but insisted that since people had started rejecting the money he had no choice.

Amina Shuaibu, a tomatoes seller at Karu Market, on her part said she stopped collecting old notes since Feb. 11, following the Feb. 10 deadline given by the CBN.

According to her, she heard that the old notes have seized to be legal tender.

“Although I heard that the court gave order that we should continue using the old notes but people are rejecting it in the market, that is why I am also rejecting it.

“I also heard that banks have equally stopped accepting the old notes but I do not know how true that is.

“There is so much confusion about the whole thing, so the best thing to do is not to collect it at all.”

Philip Ogedengbe, a concerned Nigerian, who was seen educating traders in the market, said almost everybody in the market was rejecting the old notes.

He said he could not purchase any item on his list because he went to the market with old notes.

Ogedengbe, who said he was frustrated, added that the new notes were not easy to come by.

He also said attempts to make transfer failed, adding that each attempt showed, “issuer inoperative”.

Vivian Anibe, a student, said she had used the last old N1,000 note on her to buy things she did not need.

Anibe said she went to buy bread but could not because the bread seller was not collecting old notes.

“This whole situation is so worriesome.

“I came out to buy bread but could not because many people are no longer collecting the old notes.

“On my way home, I decided to try one more place and they were still collecting old notes unfortunately they did not have bread.

“I had to buy what I did not budget for but I am happy I have spent the money,” she said.

Recall that the governors of Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara approached the Supreme Court on February 3rd, requesting an extension beyond February 10th.

A seven-member panel of the Supreme Court, led by John Okoro, has ordered a suspension of the February 10th deadline until the suit is determined on February 15th.

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