How CBN, Emefiele incited Nigerians against banks – Falana

Ogunsakin Mustapha
4 Min Read
Femi Falana SAN

There are indications that the Central Bank of Nigeria(CBN) actually lied to Nigerians earlier in the year during the currency redesign policy when it told Nigerians that it had supplied enough new currency notes to Nigerian banks, a situation that led irate mobs to attack and burned some banks across the country.

This was revealed by human rights lawyer, Femi Falana SAN, who relying on the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, demanded from the Apex bank, details of the amount that was disbursed to the banks. In its reply dated September 13, 2023, the bank revealed that it actually mopped up N3.5 trillion from circulation and disbursed N402 billion.

CBN under former governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele and the entire management of the bank, according to Falana should be prosecuted for incitement, and culpable murder of those that were killed during currency redesign policy imbroglio that enveloped and caused untold hardship on Nigerians.

List of CBN’s disbursement of new currency notes to banks

Falana statement reads:


In January 2023, the Central Bank of Nigeria claimed that it had supplied the commercial banks in the country with enough cash in line with its currency design policy. The apex bank purportedly directed security agencies to arrest and prosecute bank officials who were accused of sabotaging the new currency policy. Based on the statement, Nigerians trooped to the banks to collect cash. As the cash was insufficient, customers became angry.

The mass anger over the cash crunch provoked customers who burnt bank buildings and destroyed Automated Teller Machines in some states. The violence, paralysed social and economic activities, and claimed not less than five lives while many others were injured. But for the Supreme Court, which extended the deadline for the withdrawal of the old Naira notes up until December 31, 2023, the cash crunch would have made life more unbearable for the Nigerian people.

Convinced that the suspended governor of the Central Bank, Mr. Emefiele had lied and deceived the Nigerian people, we requested information about the actual amount made available to each of the commercial banks. In its belated response to our request, the CBN has now confirmed that it issued redesigned currency notes of N402 billion to the banks.

Having misled Nigerians to believe that sufficient cash was distributed to commercial banks to replace the sum of N3.5 trillion mopped up from customers, Mr. Godwin Emefiele and the entire management of the CBN ought to be prosecuted for incitement and culpable homicide. In addition, the CBN should rebuild the bank buildings that were destroyed and pay compensation to the families of those who were killed as a result of the incitement of members of the public.

Femi Falana SAN

Dear readers, we really need your support to keep on serving you with authoritative, truthful, and juicy stories everyday. For your support, please reach out to the editor

Share This Article