Headline News State House Diary

Naira swap policy will check corruption – Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has insisted that the cashless policy and Naira swap by the Central Bank have short and long term benefits for the country in dealing with insecurity and corruption.

The President also agreed that the apex bank should take the recommendation of the parliamentary committee to rectify identified problems.

He made the pronouncement in Abuja when the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, gave him an assurance that 200 Naira currency notes taken out of circulation would be moved back from today.

While receiving briefing from members of the House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on cashless policy and Naira swap, President Buhari said his broadcast was comprehensive enough to ameliorate the general outcry on the problems associated with the currency exchange.

He described the policy aim as very good and security-wise as seen from the lessening of kidnappings and associated corrupt practices, accusing banks of being a problem.

The CBN Governor, while obliging President Buhari’s directive to recirculate the old Naira notes, said the cashless policy was a global scheme to check insecurity and corruption.

He said senior officers at CBN had been deployed, complimented by super agents, to take new currencies to unbanked rural populations, expressing optimism that the problems he described as temporary, will go away in no distant time.

Mr Emefiele reported that he had met 15 top banks earlier in the day in an effort to resolve prevailing problems, assuring that Nigeria is at the end of the problem.

He promised that by the end of February, CBN would bring into circulation between 700-800 billion Naira which, according to him, will be in excess of what is needed to run the economy.

He emphatically sai it is not possible to put back more than three trillion Naira if the economy is to be healthy.

The Apex bank boss gave a firm promise that the Bank would not be a problem with elections, stating that they will hold successfully as far as the Bank is concerned.

The leader of the Parliamentary delegation, the House Majority Leader and Chairman of the Ad-hoc Committee , Alhaji Alhassan Ado Doguwa, explained that their meeting with the President was necessitated by the need to update him on the problems of implementation and unintended consequences of the new cash policy.

Commending the President’s broadcast to the nation earlier today, Doguwa, said the legislature and the executive arms were on the same page as far as the goals of the policy were concerned.

He, however, said that more needed to be done to remove the hardship and inconveniences that had attended its implementation.

Reporting by Abdullah Bello; editing by Julian Osamoto