The Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai, has commended the ruling of the Supreme Court, extending the use of the old naira notes beyond the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) deadline of 10 February 2023.
In a statement by his Special Adviser on Media and Communication, Muyiwa Adekeye on Wednesday, El-Rufai, thanked “the justices for their decision and appeals to the federal authorities to treat the ruling as an opportunity to relieve human suffering.’’
The statement recalled that the “governments of Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara states were compelled to approach the Supreme Court to mitigate the needless stress imposed on ordinary people and their livelihoods by the ill-timed, incompetent planning and execution of an overnight cashless policy.”
Adekeye argued that CBN advanced no emergency justification for “this callous decision to deny people access to their deposited cash.”
He said, “we have engaged extensively with the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria.
“This has included furnishing evidence-based demonstration of the threat to public welfare and economic activities by this myopic policy that would have been condemned as draconian and insensitive were it being pursued by an occupying power.”
The statement advised that it “is not to the credit of a sovereign, democratic government that this level of suffering is being callously imposed when there is neither a compelling emergency situation nor clear benefits for citizens and the economy.”
According to Adekeye, Kaduna State Government hopes that a review of the currency swap policy would now be undertaken to fashion out a better implementation programme.
The programme should include a timeline that provides enough old and new currency notes for our citizens, prioritises public welfare and restores economic activity, he advised.
“Like other elected APC state governments, we have advised that this should be based on a whole of government approach that pulls together all the necessary institutions of the federal and state governments, and recognizes global best practices and reasonable timeline for implementation,” he said.