The Supreme Court has ordered President Muhammadu Buhari’s government to allow old N200, N500, and N1,000 notes to remain in circulation till December 31, 2023.
The apex court also nullified the Federal Government’s naira redesign policy, declaring it as an affront to the 1999 Constitution.
The apex court ruled that the president did not follow the provisions of the constitution before implementing the policy, by consulting the National Security Council and National Economic Council before implementing.
The Guardian reports that Justice Emmanuel Agim, who read the lead judgement, on Friday, March 1, 2023, held that the preliminary objections by the defendants (the Attorney General of the Federation, Bayelsa, and Edo states) are dismissed as the court has the jurisdiction to entertain the suit.
Citing Section 23(2)1 of the constitution, the court held that the dispute between the federation and states, must involve law or facts.
The court said the policy has led to some people engaging in trade by barter in this modern age, in a bid to survive. The court added that the President’s disobedience of the February 8 order, is a sign of dictatorship.
The Supreme Court judgment comes three weeks after President Muhammadu Buhari declared that old 500 and 1000 naira notes have ceased to be legal tenders in Nigeria.
Buhari, however, ordered the CBN to allow the old 200 naira notes and redesigned 200, 500 and 1000 naira notes to coexist.
The president said only the 200 old naira notes will continue to be legal tender till Monday, April 10.