Confusion as CBN, banks issue different procedure for depositing old naira notes

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has denied directing banks to collect old N500 and N1,000 notes from members of the public.

This is after banks started issuing notice to their customers, informing them to commence deposit of old naira notes up to a maximum of N500,000.

In compliance with a directive from the apex bank, the commercial banks said customers are to come with a code/reference number pre-generated from the CBN portal designated for that purpose.

Osita Nwanisobi, CBN’s spokesperson, on Friday, confirmed that banks were indeed given the directive.

But in a statement issued hours later, Nwanisobi denied the development, claiming that the CBN did not authorise banks to collect the old notes.

“The attention of the Central Bank of Nigeria has been drawn to some fake and unauthorised messages quoting the CBN as having authorized the Deposit Money Banks to collect the old N500 and N1,000 Banknotes,” the statement reads.

“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.”

When contacted again for further clarification, Mr Nwanisobi was not reachable.