NIGERIA: Millions of people impacted by a disorganized redesign of the naira notes are now relieved that the Supreme Court of Nigeria has decided that old bank notes are still valid until the end of the year.
The justices claimed that the public did not receive an adequate warning before the old notes were withdrawn.
The fact that there weren’t enough new notes released caused significant rage and resentment. Many individuals camped out in front of banks because they couldn’t access cash to buy food.
The new notes were released in mid-December after the policy was declared in October of last year. Old notes were supposed to be turned in by the end of January, but this deadline had previously been extended due to the commotion.
The President of Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari was also chastised by the court for disobeying a previous provisional order to cease the policy until the issue was resolved.
It stated that there was no evidence to suggest that President Buhari’s order to issue old 200 naira notes till April 10 was carried out.
Nigerians continue to have trouble getting cash from banks and ATMs, and it’s unclear what effect the reversal will have right now.
Several people have moved to online banking because they had already deposited their old notes at the banks and the new ones are no longer available. Nonetheless, millions of people and companies continue to rely significantly on cash in rural areas.
The redesign of the 200, 500, and 1,000 naira notes was contested by sixteen Nigerian states because they felt the time frame was too short.