The presidential candidate of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has began to sing a different tone as regards the deadline the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) chose to phase out the old Naira notes.
Atiku had supported the 10 February 2023 deadline for the old N200, N500 and N1,000 notes to cease being legal, stating that the purpose of the Naira redesign policy will be defeated if the deadline is extended.
The N200, N500 and N1,000 notes were redesigned to mop the cash in circulation outside banks and to prevent vote-buying in the Presidential election on 25 February 2023.
According to the former Vice President, he is totally in support of building a cashless economy and reducing the amount of cash in our economy.
However, in a statement on Sunday, 20 February 2023, Atiku said the Naira redesign policy is hurting ordinary citizens legitimately earning their money.
With five days left for the presidential election, Atiku called for increased circulation of the redesigned Naira notes to alleviate the suffering of the masses.
He also said the central bank should allow commercial banks to resume collection of the old Naira notes to ease the transition which has been entangled in protests and attacks on bank properties.
“The CBN currency policy is hurting ordinary citizens and those who legitimately earned their money.
“The apex bank should, as a matter of urgency, allow commercial banks to join the CBN in the collection of the deposits of old N500 and N1000 notes.
“The new currency should be immediately made available in sufficient quantities to alleviate the suffering of the masses.
“I assure you that when we come to power by the mandate of your votes, the PDP administration will not allow any Nigerian who legitimately earned their money to lose a single kobo of it.
“You can take that promise to the bank because our aim is to create prosperity and not to impoverish our people,” Atiku said.
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