Despite the ex parte judgment by the supreme court that stopped the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) from imposing the proposed deadline for old naira notes, the apex bank has opened an online portal that allows citizens to deposit their old currencies as it insists they were no longer a legal tender.
The apex bank disclosed this during a press conference at its branch in Bauchi. Idris Haladu Andaza, Branch Controller for Bauchi CBN stated that the initiative was put in place to minimise loss and hardship faced by the residents. WikkiTimes gathered that commercial banks in Bauchi State stopped the cash swap of old notes to new ones, telling their customers to take their old notes to the CBN.
Andaza said there had been questions about the operational guidelines of the currency change. According to him, the bank wishes to categorically state it is willing and ready to receive old notes and credit their accounts afterwards, but based on certain conditions and criteria.
The branch controller reiterated that the old currencies ceased to be legal tender on February 10.
“The management of CBN decided that customers would have a sigh of relief by coming to the offices of the central bank in the 36 states of the federation including Abuja to deposit their money,” he said.
According to him, citizens willing to deposit money would visit the CBN portal — cbn.gov.ng — and fill out a form, generate a code and print the code for onward usage at the CBN.
“You are to provide all the basic information about yourself in the form,” he said, elaborating further that the details include: names, account numbers, and amount to be deposited among others.
Andaza revealed that the CBN would collect the code, the money and process its originality. The essence of these procedures, he said was to avoid receiving fake notes. He, however, noted that the bank would give aknowlgement after a successful deposit before crediting the depositor’s account.
“If somebody decide to deposit fake notes, he should be rest assure that he would be at the brunt,” Andaza warned, noting the bank is collaborating with relevant law enforcement agencies to handle such cases.
The branch manager also disclosed that commercial banks are to bring their deposits as well.
Asked about the bank’s plan for locals in the remote areas, Andaza said central bank had taken sensitization campaigns to several communities, encouraging them to open account with banks in line with the idea of cashless policy President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration introduced.
In a situation where some of them still ave the old notes, Andaza encouraged them to come to central bank to deposit them.
The bank said it has put in place a measure for crowd management. It said it would erect tents outside the bank’s vicinity where some officials can attend to customers.
The deadline for the deposit according to Andaza, is one week; beginning from February 11-17.