CBN Headquarters in Abuja, FCT

Nigerian Currency: We’re working with EFCC, Police, others to prosecute abusers of Naira ─CBN

*The Central Bank of Nigeria warns consumers that mishandling, defacing and hawking of Naira notes at social events are in violation of Section 21(3) of the CBN Act 2007 (as amended)

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Against the backdrop of activities of consumers, who flagrantly abuse the country’s currency at social functions, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned that abusers of Naira notes will be prosecuted by the baking and financial regulator in collaboration with other regulatory bodies.

The CBN said such other agencies include the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU).

Naira Denominations

Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, Acting Director of Corporate Communications Department at CBN, in a statement titled, “CBN, Police, Others to Prosecute Abusers of Naira”, issued Tuesday, August 17, 2021, in Abuja, FCT, said that the Bankers’ Bank latest warning was informed by the activities of some people who flagrantly abuse the legal tender at social functions in the country.

The Acting Director of Corporate Communications noted that mishandling, defacing and hawking of Naira notes at social events are in violation of Section 21(3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007 (as amended).

The statement explained: “The attention of the Central Bank of Nigeria has again been drawn to the activities of persons, who flagrantly abuse the legal tender by hurling wads of Naira notes in the air and stamping on the currency at social functions.

“There have also been cases where people mishandle the Naira, deface it, hawk the currency at parties and reject the currency in some instances. It should be stated that, contrary to the practice of these unpatriotic persons, it is neither cultural nor moral for people to disrespect the currency which citizens trade in.”

According to the Bank, “for the avoidance of doubt, Section 21(3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007 (as amended) stipulates that ‘spraying of, dancing or matching on the naira or any note issued by the Bank during social occasions or otherwise howsoever shall constitute abuse, and defacing of the Naira or such note shall be punishable under the law by fines or imprisonment or both’.

“Accordingly, the Central Bank of Nigeria is collaborating with the Nigeria Police, Federal Inland Revenue Service, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit to address the unpatriotic practice.”

The banking regulator in the country, therefore, warned Nigerian consumers, especially those at social functions, such as birthdays, weddings and funerals to desist from disrespecting the naira or risk being arrested by law enforcement agencies.

Nwanisobi added: “The Naira is our legal tender and symbol of national pride. Let us respect it and handle it with care.”

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