A group called Focus North Forum has opposed the Nigerian central bank’s proposal to redesign the naira note from December 15, 2022.
The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, announced in Abuja on Wednesday that the bank will issue a redesigned naira note by December 15, 2022, PUNCH reported.
However, according to the group, redesigning the aforementioned naira notes will only cost the state huge sums of money at the expense of taxpayers.
Reacting to the CBN’s statement through its spokesman Abdulsalam Kazeem in Kaduna on Wednesday, the group expressed concern that the redesign of the naira banknote would not increase the standard of living of Nigerians and thus was unacceptable.
He said, “The leadership of the Focus Northern Forum has been called to a press conference organised by the current Central Bank Governor in Abuja where he stated that (CBN) has redesigned the N200, N500 and N1000 Naira banknotes effective December 2022. 15th of May.
“For us, this is nothing but a sign of incompetence. As a country, our economy is in decline, our naira has depreciated to its lowest value, and all the leadership at the Central Bank of Nigeria can provide us with a solution to the above problems , i.e. redesigning our currency.
“Redesigning the aforementioned currencies will only cost our country a huge amount of money at the expense of taxpayers.
“This is at a time when we borrow to fund a significant part of our annual budget and another significant part of our borrowing goes to service debt, but the only solution the top banks can offer is to redesign our currency.
“As representatives of our people and our region, we are concerned. If we ask: will the new design allow our currency to appreciate in the exchange rate market? Will it increase the standard of living of citizens of our region and the country as a whole? These are some of the needs Questions answered immediately!
“If satisfactory answers are not provided, as we have already anticipated, the top banks should immediately stop the process of the new design, or we will work with other relevant civil society organizations, both internally and externally, to boycott our area.
“For the sake of clarity, look at the current exchange rate of the naira against a dollar or pound and you would agree with us that our currency has completely depreciated and what we need now is serious economic policy to strengthen our naira against the USD exchange rate. USD and GBP, we cannot accept. As we believe this will have a greater impact on the value of our esteemed Naira.
“The decision to redesign the Naira is clearly an attempt to empower certain individuals, consultants or contractors who are desperate to make a difference before this government ends. In any case, this idea should be rejected by all as it is not in line with the state interests, and because of the poor economic policies of the current central banker, it will not add any value to the multiple economic challenges the country is currently facing.”