Sources close to Aso Villa said that the president’s consideration bothers on the fact that he wanted to avoid disobedience of the Supreme Court’s interim order that the old notes remain valid pending the determination of the suit filed by some governors.
According to an online newspaper, the Cable, which qouted a senior government official who said that the president was worried about the hardship faced by Nigerians as well as the legal implications of disobeying the order of the constitutional court.
“The official told TheCable that this was the focus of a meeting between Buhari and the leadership of Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) as well as the Progressives Governors Forum until the early hours of Wednesday. The governors were then expected to withdraw their case at the apex court;
“The resolve was to give room for President Buhari to make concession on the monetary policy and make the following announcements public:
- that the old naira notes of N1,000, N500 and N200 be allowed free movement in and out of the banks for the next 60 days.
- that all three notes will be legal tender during this period, but that any old N500 or N1,000 that goes into a bank will not be sent back into circulation.
“Buhari, who had earlier delayed attending the federal executive council (FEC) meeting by 40 minutes to monitor the development at the Supreme Court, was disappointed that the governors reneged on their promise to withdraw the case;
He had, after the meeting on Wednesday, met with Godwin Emefiele, the CBN governor, and Modibbo Tukur, the director of the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU), on the need to allow all old notes circulate in the system to ease hardship on ordinary Nigerians;
“The president will not disobey the court. But he is also concerned about the suffering of Nigerians and wants the to find lasting solution to it,” the official further explained to TheCable;
“It is clear that some militancy is being propagated against the people by the elite who have the means to secure the new notes no matter what while the people continue to suffer;
“The president will continue to engage and see the way out of the logjam.”
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