Despite the Monday night direction to commercial banks to accept and disburse the old naira notes, Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara states have finalized plans to launch contempt proceedings against the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, SAN, and the Central Bank Governor Godwin Emefiele.
Abdulhakeem Mustapha, SAN, the main attorney for the three states, revealed on Thursday that the CBN’s press release ordering banks to accept old naira notes was just a ruse to appear in compliance.
The old N200, N500, and N1,000 naira notes were made legal tender until December 31 by the Supreme Court in its decision from March 3.
The Supreme Court ruled in a decision written by Justice Emmanuel Agim that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (ret. ), had violated the constitution by giving orders for the redesign of the naira.
The seven-member panel also criticized the President for saying in a broadcast on February 16 that only the N200 note should remain legal tender, blatantly flouting the highest court’s injunction.
The court mandated that the outdated currency be accepted until December 31.
Despite pressure from Nigerians, the AGF and the CBN governor refused to abide by the ruling.
The banks also refused to accept or utilize the old notes at this time, claiming the absence of CBN instructions regarding the verdict.
The plaintiffs served the enrolled order and Certified True Copy of the Supreme Court ruling on the AGF penultimate Friday as part of the judgment’s enforcement.
The plaintiffs threatened to file contempt proceedings against the two officials after the respondents failed to abide by the verdict if they continued to disobey the ruling.
In a statement on Monday night, the CBN instructed banks to accept and distribute the old currencies in accordance with the top court’s instructions.
In light of this, the CBN convened with the Bankers’ Committee and decided that the existing N200, N500, and N1000 bank naira notes should continue to be accepted alongside the new banknotes through December 31, 2023. Therefore, it is required of all parties involved to act in accordance.
The senior attorney disclosed that he had received orders from his clients to file a contempt case against the AGF and the CBN governor.
“The press release issued by the Central Bank of Nigeria is just a mere camouflage intended to create the appearance of compliance,” he said. There is nothing comparable. Additionally, the states of Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara, as well as our clients, have advised us to continue the contempt cases already filed against the attorney general and the governor of the central bank.
“The Supreme Court’s ruling has not been followed. They have violated the court’s order. The already-started contempt procedures will be reactivated. There is a legal procedure involved.