Naira Swap: FG says it would obey Supreme Court ruling suspending February 10 deadline

The Federal Government has said it will obey the Supreme Court ruling that temporarily suspended the February 10 deadline given by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the exchange of the old naira notes with the newly redesigned naira notes.

This was confirmed on Thursday, Feb. 9, by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, during an interview on Arise Television. However, he said that the government was hopeful that the ex parte ruling which expires on Wednesday, February 15, 2023, would be upturned.

The comment by Malami is coming barely 24 hours after he had on behalf of the Federal Government filed an objection and asked the Supreme Court to dismiss a lawsuit by 3 states (Kaduna, Zamfara, and Kogi States) over the naira redesign policy of the CBN.

However, the minister clarified that the federal government, out of its regard for the rule of law, would abide by the order of the apex court, even though it intended to challenge it and would do so within the provisions of the law.

The order was issued during a ruling on an ex parte application brought by Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara states against the AGF. They had asked the court to issue an interim injunction against the government, pending the hearing and determination of their suit challenging the naira redesign policy of the CBN.

The three states argued, among others, that the policy had brought an excruciating situation upon the country and unless the Supreme Court intervened timeously there might be anarchy in the country.

According to them, since the announcement of the policy, there has been an acute shortage in the supply of the new naira notes in their states, thereby making it very difficult and nearly impossible for citizens to access the new notes.

While they argued that the notice period given by the federal government was inadequate, they claimed that the CBN did not follow laid down procedure for implementation of the policy.

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