Buhari Says: Currency Redesign Is Achieving Its Target, Though Nigerians Are Suffering

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Although the currency redesign policy of the Nigerian government is causing ‘difficulties ’ for Nigerians, it’s achieving its target, President Muhammadu Buhari said Thursday.

The Nigerian leader, in a public broadcast, said he was cognizant of the lapses of the policy, including the insufficiency of the new naira notes, but it was achieving its set objectives.

Notwithstanding the earliest lapses experienced, the evaluation and feedback technique set up has revealed that revenue have came up from the policy action, he said.

President Buhari also listed what his government believes are the interim successes of the currency redesign policy.

I’ve been reliably informed that since the inception of this program, about N2.1 trillion out of the notes beforehand held outside the banking system, had been successfully reclaimed, he said.

READ MORE: Protesters storm CBN in Ondo to exchange old notes

The president noted that this represents about 80% of the N3.23 trillion currency in circulation outside the banking industry as of October 2022. President Buhari said there’s a need to restore the statutory competency of the CBN to keep firm control over the money in circulation. He recalled that the proportion of currency outside banks grew from 78% in 2015 to 85% in 2022.

As of October 2022, hence, currency in circulation had risen to N3.23 trillion; out of which only N500 billion was within the Banking System while N2.7 trillion remained permanently outside the system; thereby distorting the financial policy and effective management of inflation, he said.

The huge volume of Naira Notes outside the banking system has proven to be practically inaccessible for economic activities and by implication, slow the attainment of potential economic growth, the president added.

The president also argued that the new naira policy is a strong foundation to ensure free and fair elections.

I’m cognizant that this new financial policy has also contributed immensely to the minimization of the influence of money in politics, he noted.

The new naira policy is a positive departure from the past and represents a bold legacy step by this administration, towards laying a strong foundation for free and fair elections.

The 2023 presidential elections will be held later this month on 25 February 2023.

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