The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has denied authorising commercial banks to collect old N500 and N1,000 notes, contradicting an announcement by the banks that they are collecting same old notes deposit.
In a statement by its spokesman Osita Nwanisobi on Friday, the apex bank debunked claims by commercial banks that they have been directed to collect old N500 and N1,000 not above N500,000.
“The attention of the Central Bank of Nigeria has been drawn to some fake and unauthorized messages quoting the CBN as having authorized the Deposit Money Banks to collect the old N500 and N1,000 Banknotes.
“For the avoidance of doubt, and in line with Mr. President’s broadcast of February 16, 2023, the CBN has been directed to ONLY reissue and recirculate the old N200 banknotes and this is expected to circulate as legal tender for 60 days up to April 10, 2023.
“Members of the public should therefore disregard any message and/or information not formally released by the Central Bank of Nigeria on this subject,” the statement reads.
This comes shortly after many banks publicly announced earlier on Friday that they are collecting N500 and N1,000 notes deposit, helping the apex mop up old notes from circulation.
On Tuesday, the CBN announced that though the old notes have ceased to be legal tenders, citizens who still have them can deposit them with branches of the apex bank across 36 states of the country.
Also, in a broadcast Thursday morning, President Muhammadu Buhari approved the recirculation of only old N200 notes for a 60 days window, ending on April 10.
Mr Buhari added that citizens with old N500 and N1,000 notes can deposit them with the CBN within the stipulated time.
In October 2022, the CBN announced the naira redesign policy, a development that has seen old notes withdrawn from circulation, leaving citizens suffering cash scarcity.