The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced that it will allow the old design of N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes to continue to be legal tender indefinitely. This decision the bank said was made in line with international best practices and to prevent a repeat of earlier experiences.
The CBN in a statement issued and signed by Dr Isa AbdulMumin Director Corporate Communications stated that all banknotes issued by the bank will continue to be legal tender, even beyond the initial deadline of December 31, 2023. The bank AbdulMumin said “is also working with the relevant authorities to vacate the existing court ruling on the matter”.
All CBN branches across the country have been directed to continue issuing and accepting “all denominations” of Naira banknotes, both old and redesigned. The CBN is also encouraging the public to embrace alternative modes of payment, such as e-channels, for daily transactions.
The decision to extend the legal tender status of the old design of N200, N500, and N1,000 banknotes is a welcome one. It will help to alleviate the cash squeeze that has been affecting many Nigerians in recent months. It will also give people more time to exchange their old banknotes for new ones.