As the struggle for new naira notes continues and tension mounts, there are fears that there might be a breakdown of Law and Order in the country. Already protests have been held in places like Ondo, Benin and ibadan where properties belonging to commercial Banks were destroyed.
Nigerians are expressing anger over inability to access cash and are beginning to attack banks with staff escaping for their safety.
To avert any form of crisis, some State Governors and Civil Society organisations have taken the matter to the courts.
Governors Nasir El-Rufai, Yahaya Bello and Bello Matawalle have taken the federal government before the Supreme Court seeking a declaration that the new policy being carried out by the Central Bank of Nigeria under the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari is not in compliance with the excellent provisions of the Constitution and the CBN Act.
A social political group has now joined in the legal battle.
The social Rehabilitation Grace and supportive initiative has also dragged the CBN to court praying the court to compel the Apex Bank to extend the expiry date for the old naira notes by six months and while Borno state Governor, Babagana Zulum has threatened to revoke the land license of banks who hoard and sell the new naira notes.
Convener of the Social Rehabilitation Grace and supportive initiative, Dr Marindoti Oludare speaking on the midweek edition of TVCBreakfast said the policy that CBN is trying to do is essentially called demonetization.
He said behind the money is a value, a value that is earned from hard work, and the money is just a representation of that value that you have earned.
He mentioned the CBN Act of 2007, under which Emefiele obtained the authority to proclaim that the currency used to be legal tender granted him such power, but the same act, Section 20 of that act, Subsection 3 stated that upon expiration of the power, on demand, banks must redeem the value of that currency.
“It did not say that the banks shall redeem it within the time frame placed by the CBN governor.
“Emefiele lied to all Nigerians when he said on November 23 2022, that your money becomes useless.
“Emefiele does not have the power to erase your value, your value is your dignity.
“We have a fundamental rights dignity which is enshrined in the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria.
“By not giving Nigerians access to their money, he is invariably denying us of our fundamental right to dignity of which Emefiele does not have the power because the CBN act is very clear.
“This is a constitutional republic, we are a democracy, Buhari and Emefiele do not have the power to devalue us, nor debate to us or de-platform us”.
Mr Oludare went on to say that Emefiele has destroyed the Nigerian economy for the past 8 years.
The Social Rehabilitation Grace and supportive initiative noted that there is inflation all over the world but in Nigeria, it is 10% inflation, 90% “Emefielation”.
“The CBN governor cannot destroy our democracy which we fought so hard for in which a lot of people died.
Mr Oludare who stated that the federal government has not been proactive enough by taking into consideration the sufferings of Nigerians added that it has also behaved like a puppet on a string.