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CBN warns consumers against fake Naira notes in circulation

Faces of Old and New N200, N500 and N1000 Notes

*The Central Bank of Nigeria warns consumers against the proliferation of counterfeit Naira notes, particularly in higher denominations in circulation, stating the falsification, making, or counterfeiting of any banknotes or coins issued as legal tender is a grave, punishable offence in the West Afrcian country

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said its attention was drawn to the circulation of counterfeit Naira notes, the national currency, especially higher denominations, by some individuals for transactions in food markets and other commercial centres across major cities in the West African country.

The CBN Friday, December 8, 2023, in a statement, warned consumers of financial  products and services against the proliferation of counterfeit banknotes, particularly in higher denominations in circulation.

The Bankers’ Bank also stated that it observed the fake banknotes are being circulated during transactions in food markets and various commercial centres across major cities nationwide.

Penalty for currency counterfeiting

Referencing Section 20(4) of the CBN Act, 2007 (as amended), the banking sector regulator further asserted that the falsification, making, or counterfeiting of any banknote or coin issued by the CBN, which is legal tender in Nigeria, is a grave offence punishable by a minimum prison term of five years.

In collaboration with pertinent security and financial agencies, the CBN said it is actively working to apprehend and prosecute counterfeiters while confiscating fake Naira notes.

The CBN also stated: “The public is urged to report individuals suspected of possessing counterfeit currency to the nearest police station or any branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria.

“The CBN is in constant collaboration with relevant security and financial agencies to confiscate fake Naira banknotes, arrest and prosecute counterfeiters.”

The Bank equally urged all Deposit Money Banks (DMBs), Financial Houses, Bureau de Change, and the general public to heighten vigilance and adopt necessary precautionary measures to prevent the acceptance and circulation of counterfeit notes.

As a measure to minimise the risk of counterfeit banknotes spread, the CBN as well urged Nigerian consumers to embrace alternative payment methods, such as electronic channels, for day-to-day transactions.

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