Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State has issued a stern warning to individuals and businesses in the state rejecting old Naira notes. He stated that it was against the law of the land to reject the old notes and that anyone caught doing so would face prosecution. The governor emphasized that the position of the Supreme Court on the matter remained unchanged, and ruled that both new and old Naira notes are still legal tender and can circulate beyond the February 10, 2023 deadline set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
The State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, issued a statement on behalf of the governor, announcing that the state government had joined the dispute arising from the Naira swap at the Supreme Court. The hearing of the matter has been adjourned to February 22. The Apex court had ruled on February 8 that the old notes remained legal tender.
Governor Sanwo-Olu commended the patience and calmness of Lagosians in the face of the Naira shortage crisis and urged them to remain law-abiding. He also cautioned against mischief makers who might exploit the situation to promote their anti-people agenda. The governor expressed confidence in the Judiciary to resolve all the issues surrounding the currency shortage crisis.
In addition to warning against the rejection of old Naira notes, Governor Sanwo-Olu announced that his government had initiated measures to cushion the effect of the CBN directive on vulnerable members of the society. This includes the distribution of food packs and a 50% fare reduction on all state transportation facilities.
The governor’s statement underscores the importance of adhering to the law regarding the circulation of Naira notes in the country. It also highlights the need for individuals and businesses to exercise caution and avoid acts that could disrupt the economy and harm the most vulnerable members of society.