Naira Notes Redesign Policy: Nigerian Youths, Use Your Heads Wisely
By Collins Mbakwe
The CBN had on 26 October 2022 announced its intention to redesign the 200, 500 and 1,000 naira notes to tackle corruption and counterfeiting.
Since the notes were unveiled, Nigerians across different parts of the country have been struggling to access them from banks and ATM cash points.
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No doubt, the recent naira redesign policy of the federal government has plunged Nigerians into untold hardship, as Nigerians can hardly access their money in various banks. Bank super agents and other unscrupulous Nigerians have not helped matters.
Many have faulted the policy or its timing, which has brought about several protests across the country.
Unfavoured by the policy, some state governors especially of the APC had got a restraining order from the Supreme Court against the federal government and the CBN seeking an extension of the deadline for the use of the old naira notes.
Those political leeches (the governors) claimed that they were speaking out because of the suffering of the people. Sadly, many gullible Nigerians believed them and have since then taken to the streets and the internet to express their displeasure.
Granted that the inability of Nigerians to access their money has made life difficult within the last few weeks, a critical look at the whys and wherefores for the policy, reveals that for the first time in almost eight years, the new economic policy is the only policy of this administration that may favour the masses and will not favour the callous politicians. No wonder, those heartless rogues who call themselves senators and governors championed by the demonic El- Rufai have not been at ease since then.
Shehu Sani was right when he asked, “Where was El-Rufai when he embarked on the demolition of ordinary people’s houses, markets, and shops? Where was El-Rufai when he deprived thousands of civil servants and teachers of their jobs; where was he when he subjected citizens in his state to agony and pains? He is now coming out to say he is defending the old notes to assuage hardship.”
Sani commended the cashless policy being implemented by Federal Government, saying that it will reduce incidences of vote buying as the nation conducts the general elections.
He said: “In the past, votes were being bought by politicians, who are contesting elections.”
But, this policy is making it impossible for candidates to offer a financial inducement to the electorate. So, there is political tension, coupled with economic issues. All are now directed to overheating the polity.
“First, the redesigning of old naira notes and cashless policy have affected two segments of Nigerian society. It affected the poor, for the fact that there is no proper enlightenment and provision was not made to take care of shocks and consequences of the redesigning. It has also affected the political class, especially those who have starched billion of old naira notes to use them to buy votes.
“Nigerian elections in the past have been so monetised. You saw what happened during the primaries; money was used to buy aspirants and votes to secure tickets. And they intended to use the general election to share money. This should not be allowed to continue in Nigeria. Let’s allow credible leaders to emerge.
“Today, the reactions of some of these politicians against naira redesign have shown that they have stashed billions of naira to buy votes.”
We cannot fall for their deceits again – not now! We must remember that as regards the non-implementation of the N30,000 minimum wage, no governor went to the supreme court to ensure its implementation. We should remember that Nasiri Al-Rufai and his cohorts never went to court to ensure the autonomy of the Local Government.
Again, on Non-payment of salaries and pensions, no governor went to Supreme Court. El-Rufai and his cohorts never went to the Supreme Court during the eight months ASUU went on strike and the students were languishing at home.
In the face of excruciating pains brought about by Fuel scarcity, Electricity hikes; alarming Unemployment rate, Poverty, Heightened inflation, and many more, no Supreme Court order was sought by El-Rufai his henchmen. But now, he has made the supreme court his second home, because the new policy will certainly limit their ( El-Rufai and his cohorts) votes buying spree.