CBN Governor, Emefiele Appears Before House Of Reps, Shifts Blame Of New Naira Notes Scarcity To Deposit Banks

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, on Tuesday finally appeared before the ad-hoc committee of the House of Representatives which is investigating the scarcity of the new naira notes.

Recall that a few days ago, the Speaker of the House, Femi Gbajabiamila, threatened to issue warrants of arrest for the Emefiele and the managing director of any commercial bank that fails to honour the invitation by the House.

But on Tuesday, while addressing the ad-hoc committee, Emefiele explained that he had been out of the country, hence, his failure to honour the House’s previous invitations.

Meanwhile, speaking on the redesigned naira note, the CBN boss said the apex bank’s actions were in line with international best practices and that the bank has to be in control of the currency in circulation in the country.

According to him, in 2015, N1.4 trillion was in circulation and by 2022, it had risen to N3.33 trillion.

On the daily withdrawal limit and the scarcity of the new Naira notes, the CBN Governor blamed commercial banks for the scarcity of the new Naira notes but however said that the reason the apex bank directed deposit banks to ensure only ATM withdrawals was to limit the daily withdrawal of individuals.

He faulted the trend of the new Naira notes being sighted at places of events and parties and stated he was in meetings with commercial banks to mitigate such trend.

He however agreed that the new policies would hurt some persons but claimed it was in the interest of the country, especially in combating insecurity.

But whereas the CBN had dismissed claims of scarcity of the new naira notes, saying that it has “massively” supplied commercial banks with the new notes and directed them to disburse it to their customers, commercial banks countered the CBN over the claims of having supplied them enough of the new naira banknotes.

The unabating scarcity of the new Naira notes forced the House of Representatives to set up an ad-hoc committee to resolve the difficulties between the CBN and commercial banks, despite the insistence of Emefiele that many of the banks were hoarding the notes.

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