The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN has announced the withdrawal of N200, N500, and N1000 notes commencing with immediate effect.
The notes would be replaced with newer ones from December 15 this year.
In a special announcement made on Wednesday, the CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele said the old notes would cease to be legal tender from January 31, 2023.
He said the apex bank has received the approval of FEC.
The newly redesigned Naira notes are to come into use, on December 15, 2022.
The CBN governor said: “In line with the provisions of Sections 2(b), Section 18(a) and Section 19, Seb section(a) and (b) (2007), the management of the CBN has sought and obtained the approval of President Muhammadu Buhari to redesign, produce, release and circulate new series of banknotes at N100, N200, N500, and N1,00 levels.”
“In line with this approval, we have finalised arrangements for the new currency to begin circulation on December 15, 2022, after its launch by President Buhari.
“The new and existing currencies shall remain legal tender and circulate together until January 31, 2023, when the existing currencies shall cease to be legal tender.”
Once the new notes are designed Nigerians are expected to take old notes to banks for the new notes.
The CBN Governor is also concerned about how Nigerian currency is being stored currently.
According to him, the bulk of the nation’s currency notes was outside bank vaults and the CBN would not allow the situation to continue.
Emefiele added: “To be more specific, as of the end of September 2022, available data at the CBN indicates that N2.7 trillion out of the N3.3 trillion currency in circulation was outside the vault of commercial banks across the country and supposedly held by members of the public.
“Evidently, currency in circulation has more than doubled since 2015, rising from N1.46 trillion in December 2015 to N3.2 trillion as of September 2022. I must say that this is a worrisome trend that must not be continued to be allowed.”
According to him, the initiative by the CBN will help address some of the nation’s security threats, especially kidnapping and terrorism.
The Apex bank boss revealed that the new currencies will include the N200, N500, and N1000 notes.
He advised Nigerians to take their old notes to banks in exchange for new ones.