Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, APC presidential candidate, says the Supreme Court ruling on the implication of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) re-designed naira notes and cashless policy has saved Nigeria from political and economic shutdown.
Tinubu in a statement issued by Mr Bayo Onanuga, Director, Media and Publicity, APC Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) on Wednesday in Abuja, said the policy had subjected the masses to pains.
He hailed the 36 state governors, especially the progressive APC governors, for standing on the side of Nigerians over the policy.
According to the former two-term Lagos State governor, Nigerians were bearing the brunt of the policy because it was poorly implemented.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Supreme Court in a law suit brought before it by the governments of Zamfara, Kogi and Kaduna States gave an interim injunction against the CBN and Federal Government.
The state governments had asked that the old N200, N500 and N1,000 naira notes remain legal tender beyond the CBN Feb. 10 deadline for the swapping of the old naira notes until the case is fully disposed.
Tinubu said the governors, especially APC governors who instituted the suit against the CBN and Federal Government at the Supreme Court, acted well on behalf of helpless Nigerians.
“The governors have saved the country from a needless political and economic crises and miseries.
“This have clearly become the unintended consequences of the monetary policy of the apex bank,” the statement quoted Tinubu as saying.
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He noted that the Supreme Court ruling coincided with the advisory of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), urging for the extension of the deadline for the swap of the old naira notes.
This, he said, was going by the problems being experienced across the country in getting the new naira notes.
Tinubu applauded the courage of the governors, saying they acted to save the country from avoidable dangerous political crises and social unrest which the policy had brought on Nigerians.
“Our country was dangerously careering toward anarchy and political and economic shutdown.
“But with the Supreme Court interim ruling, our country has been pulled back from the precipices.
“We thank our Supreme Court Justices for ruling wisely on the side of the people who have been subjected to undue agony and pains since this policy was announced,” Tinubu said.
He added that the Federal Government and relevant stakeholders could now work out better framework on how to proceed with the new policy without causing any social and economic disruption and inconvenience to Nigerians.
He noted that there were examples of other countries that had successfully and seamlessly changed their currencies to learn from.
He said such countries gave a long time, at least 12 months to effect the currency change, adding that:” they do not engage in CBN-like Fire Brigade approach.
“We have seen how a good policy can be poorly implemented to cause unintended problems for the people who should be the beneficiaries.
“While lessons have been learnt, we must now move on as a country and people with a renewed hope for a better tomorrow.
“The sole aim of my running to be the president of our country is to make life better and more abundant for our people and this is an ideal for which I will remain eternally committed to,” Tinubu stressed.
He called on the CBN to ensure that the Supreme Court ruling was effectively executed by taking all necessary steps.
This, he said, should include ensuring sufficient availability of naira notes whether old or new and properly sensitising the public to the ruling and the consequent validity of old notes. (NAN)