A coalition of Civil Society Organisations has thrown its weight behind the Central Bank of Nigeria over the new Naira policy, indicating that politicians are sponsoring protests emanating across the country for the extension of the deadline for old Naira swapping. Addressing journalists in a press conference on Wednesday, Obed Okwukwe, the National Coordinator of
A coalition of Civil Society Organisations has thrown its weight behind the Central Bank of Nigeria over the new Naira policy, indicating that politicians are sponsoring protests emanating across the country for the extension of the deadline for old Naira swapping.
Addressing journalists in a press conference on Wednesday, Obed Okwukwe, the National Coordinator of the Coalition of the Civil Society, stated that some elements are plotting to disrupt orderliness in the country because of the CBN policy, urging president Mohammadu Buhari not to yield to the pressure.
Okukwe noted that politicians are working assiduously to frustrate the policy, given that the redesigning of new notes and withdrawal policy does not conform with their mindsets to rig the coming general elections, and because of that they are mobilising miscreants across the country to sabotage the coming polls.
He further noted that the civil society organisations have independently reviewed the policy and concluded that it is beneficial to Nigerians, and the February 10th deadline set by the apex bank is acceptable.
The coalition, therefore, urged the president and the CBN to ignore the restraining order from the Supreme court order regarding the policy. Okukuwe concluded by charging President Buhari to sign an executive to override the injunction from the supreme court
Okukwe said: “Over the weekend, we were given information that some of our members’ organizations were approached by some persons with requests that they mobilise their members to protest which, as we were informed, was going to deteriorate into violence and destructive actions. all aimed at causing a shutdown of the system and making it look like Nigerians are against the Naira redesign and cash withdrawal limit policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria so that the president can be forced to reverse both policies.
“Promises of handsome rewards were put on the table for them and they were told that the protest should reach all states of the federation. the protests are to start in the southwest to enable the Lagos media to have genuine reasons to make it a trend on all our social media platforms. they were further told that it would be a total and final push to the president.
“From what was informed, the protests were to happen simultaneously nationwide on Thursday, I mean tomorrow the 9th day of February 2023. They have also agreed that they were to concentrate on Area 3 and area 8 of Garki and also concentrate on banks in Ademola Adetokunbo crescent and Aminu Kano in Wuse 2, Abuja FCT, where we have many banks situated.
“We are glad to inform you all that all our members and member organisations are unanimous in our stand and we shall reject this proposal and we hereby reject it completely. We have further put out questions to our members on their views on the policies of the Central Bank of Nigeria, whether the policies are deserving of our supports, and we have it that protests being planned to hold tomorrow guised as protests against scarcity of new Naira are indeed protests organised to cause violence and destruction of public property and destruction of public order.
“We beg the security agencies to please and please, we are on our knees, begging you to foil this protest that will be happening tomorrow. Open your minds to the walls so that this protest will not come to fruition. The target is to reverse the policy and where that fails, force a shift on election dates or lead to an uprising that will cause the administration to come to an abrupt end.
“The opponents of the currency redesign and cash withdrawal policy deadline are pushing strongly at heart for a shift of the February 2023, general elections. We have credible intelligence that those behind the campaign for the shift in the deadline of the new currency redesign and cash withdrawal limit are now pushing that the 2023 general elections be shifted”, he said
The group later embarked on a massive protest in front of the CBN office in Abuja.
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