President Muhammadu Buhari is mulling the extension of the old naira notes validity till April 10, The Cable reports.
Protests have rocked many parts of the country over the scarcity of the banknotes with three people reportedly killed during violent demonstrations in Benin City, Edo State, on Wednesday.
This came a few hours after the Supreme Court adjourned the hearing in the suit filed by eight All Progressives Congress (APC) governors challenging the redesign of the naira notes and implementation of the deadline on the currency swap to February 22.
The states involved in the suit are Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara which initiated the case at the Supreme Court.
Five others – Kano, Niger, Ekiti, Ondo, and Ogun later joined as co-plaintiffs in the suit.
Despite the Supreme Court’s last week ruling restraining the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) from enforcing the February 10 deadline for the withdrawal of the old naira notes from circulation, the apex bank has continued to insist that the old N200, N500, and N1000 notes ceased to be legal tender on that date.
A top government official told the newspaper on Wednesday that Buhari was wary of disobeying the Supreme Court’s order, hence his consideration of 60 days extension for the validity of the old naira notes.
He added that the president was worried about the hardship faced by Nigerians and the legal implications of disobeying the apex court’s order.
The reasons, according to him, dominated discussions during a meeting between President Buhari, the leadership of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), and the Progressives Governors’ Forum that ended in the early hours of Wednesday.
The official added that the president expected the governors to withdraw their suit at the Supreme Court before making public their agreements on the policy.
By Promise Eze
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