The Kogi state government on Friday ordered the arrest and prosecution of individuals and businesses that rejected old naira banknotes.
A statement by Information Commissioner Kingsley Fanwo praised Nigerians for the “historic decision of the Supreme Court”.
The Supreme Court ruled last week that old and new naira banknotes are legal tender until December 31, 2023.
Fanwo explained that Yahaya Bello’s government had joined with other states to pursue the case to ease difficulties due to lack of funds.
He said it was unacceptable for some residents and businesses to continue to reject old banknotes, even after the court confirmed their use. “The rejection of the old naira notes clearly does not follow the judgment of the Supreme Court,” the commissioner pointed out.
“Anyone who refuses old naira banknotes should be reported to security authorities and the government for immediate action. In addition, banks that refuse to accept old naira deposits should be sealed.
Fanwo warned that the government would not accept financial institutions that “willfully disobey a court order, let alone an order of the highest court in Nigeria”.
“Since the banks issue old naira, they are bound to get them too. We can’t keep killing our economy after the Supreme Court gives us our freedom.
The statement announced the creation of a high-level committee to ensure full support and respect for the ruling.