The former Deputy Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Kingsley Moghalu, has waded into debates regarding the implications of the recent Naira redesign policy and cash withdrawal limit by the apex financial institution in the country.
Further to the launch of the redesigned naira notes, the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, had hitherto limited weekly cash withdrawals over the counter to N100,000 for individuals and N500,000 for organisations regardless of their size.
The apex financial institution later increased its weekly cash withdrawal limits set for individuals and corporate organisations to N500,000 and N5 million, respectively, following concerns from stakeholders and Nigerians.
Since the policy had been put into effect, Nigerians had been conveying their grievances about coping with the development.
Moghalu, in a series of tweets on his Twitter handle, advised the Central Bank against complete cashless policy, citing likely consequences.
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The political economist also raised concerns about its implications for vulnerable Nigerians and charged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) as well as security agencies to go after corrupt politicians.
He wrote: “I support the @cenbank cash-less policy (note: less cash, not NO CASH) and indeed I led its implementation several years ago as Deputy Governor for Operations. It’s more efficient and transparent. But cash must still be an option. Even in the most advanced economies this is so.
“We can’t criminalize the use of cash by citizens who chose that option, and I am emphatic about this. @inecnigeria and our law enforcement agencies are not following our corrupt politicians “bumper to bumper” as they should. Citizens shouldn’t suffer for that.
“Indeed, in a country with so much poverty and illiteracy, we must accept the limitations of this reality and focus on those fundamentals of educating and giving poor people opportunities to create income and wealth. We can’t minor in the major and major in the minor. Basics first.”
By Ambali Abdulkabeer