By Bassey UskoHolders of the old series of N1,000, N500, and N200 banknotes after the expiration of the deadline for depositing them at the banks will not be able to use them to conduct any financial transaction, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said. N
However, such holders of these banknotes can still redeem their face value only at the CBN after they cease be accepted as legal tender on February 10, 2023.
The Director, Corporate Communications Department at the CBN, Osita Nwanisobi, clarified that the old notes would cease to be legal tender after February 10, 2023, and can no longer be used for any form of transaction afterwards.
He said that in line with the provision of Section 20(3) of the CBN Act, Nigerians would have the opportunity to redeem the face value of the Naira only at the Central Bank, after the currencies had lost their legal tender status, subject to meeting certain conditions.
The apex financial system regulator did state what these conditions were.
Reiterating the pledge by the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, at the meeting with the House of Representatives Ad-hoc committee on Tuesday, Nwanisobi said Nigerians would not lose their money to the exercise.
He urged citizens to take advantage of the extended deadline of February 10, 2023 to deposit the old banknotes currently in their possession at their banks or through mobile money agents.
Citing instances in other climes, Nwanisobi explained that banknotes that cease to be legal tender are only redeemable by the monetary authorities of such jurisdictions upon demand subject to conditions /processes as may be prescribed by that Central Bank.
Nwanisobi also used the opportunity to encourage Nigerians to adopt other payment channels for their transactions, saying that Nigeria’s payment system was robust enough and ranks amongst the first in the world.