A civil society group, the Centre for Reform and Public Advocacy, on Saturday described as a treasonable offence, the counter directives by the All Progressives Congress (APC) governors on the redesign of the naira notes.
Buhari had in a national broadcast on Thursday directed the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to extend the validity of the old N200 notes till April 10.
The president also declared that the old N500 and N1000 notes had ceased to be legal tender contrary to the Supreme Court’s directive that all the naira notes remain legal tender pending the determination of a suit filed by the governors on the matter next Wednesday.
However, the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, and his counterparts in Kano, Jigawa, Lagos, and Ogun had rejected President Buhari’s directive and insisted the old naira notes remain legal tender until the apex court determines otherwise.
In a statement by its legal adviser, Kalu Agu, the CSO insisted that the governors cannot afford to hide under the immunity clause as entrenched under Section 308 of the 1999 constitution to engage in treasonable activities.
Agu said: “As a CSO, we sincerely align ourselves to the position of Prof. Chidi Anselm Odinkalu and others when they asserted that governors of the APC are committing treason against Nigeria’s sovereignty.
“Arising from the above provisions of the laws, can the Central Bank of Nigeria on its own volition call for legal tender redesign and the deadline for the use of old legal tender without the approval of the president?
“The answer with respect is a capital NO! How then will the APC governors be issuing contrary directives on the use of old naira notes when they do not have such powers either donated to them by the 1999 constitution, the Acts of the National Assembly or even law from their state’s houses of assembly?
“The contrary directives issued by the APC governors that the old naira notes should continue to be a legal tender in their various states when the president had through the CBN issued a directive in that respect are treasonable.
“The contrary directives from the APC governors are not only unconstitutional, unlawful, and illegal but also highly inciteful, thereby aiding the populace to wage war against the federation.
“The APC governors cannot hide under the immunity clause as enshrined under section 308 of the 1999 constitution to be engaging in treasonable activities against the sovereignty of this nation.”
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