Notwithstanding assertions that The Central Bank of Nigeria had approved the bills for the transaction, oil marketers claimed on Monday that they were no longer interested in the old naira notes and would not collect them from the general public.
Also, it was learned that Deposit Money Banks had not yet given oil marketers any instructions about the collecting of obsolete naira notes.
Marketers of Premium Motor Spirit, often known as gasoline, and other petroleum products advised our correspondent that the Federal Government should issue more naira notes in order to stop confusing Nigerians.
“They claimed to have redesigned the naira, thus the Central Bank of Nigeria ought to issue the new currency if they have. Why do they confuse people and move us backward? What will we do with the outdated currency? According to Muhammad Shuaibu, Secretary of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, Abuja-Suleja.
He added, “The Federal Government said it had directed the CBN to destroy the old notes and that the notes cease to be legal tender. So as far as we are concerned, and as businessmen, it will be very difficult to go ahead and start collecting that money.
“For it is until we hear that banks have started collecting it before we will start collecting it from the public. But as far as we are concerned, we will not collect any old money in any of our petrol stations.
He said the banks “have not told us to collect the old notes, and even the new notes, we are not seeing them. Majorly the fuel we are selling is through bank transfers and Point of Sale service, which is cashless.” Shuaibu argued that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), had said that his directive was for the CBN to destroy the old N1,000 and N500 notes and that they ceased to be legal tender. “So where are the old notes coming from? And if not for the network problem we encounter in Nigeria, this cashless policy is the best,” the IPMAN official stated.
He emphasized that the Federal Government should declare the newly designed notes surplus and allow them to circulate if it was adamant on using them.
In response to the Supreme Court’s ruling, Shuaibu stated, “Based on that ruling, we now have two types of N1,000 notes—old and new, as well as N500 notes. Which one is the actual legal tender right now?
“The Federal Government said it had stopped the old notes, and the Supreme Court said people should transact with it till December, please, which one should we follow?
“If we are going to be using both, it means we will have two types of N1,000 and N500 notes in circulation. Is this not going to create confusion? The CBN should come out and tell us, or tell the commercial banks.”
He said the commercial banks should then tell the oil marketers, in order to have a seamless flow of cash across the country.
“But as far as we are concerned, those of us in this business, we don’t even want that old money again and we are not going to collect it.
“However, as I’m talking to you now, if the banks had asked us to collect the old notes, I will be the first to accept it and deposit same to the banks. But honestly, there’s nothing like that now,” Shuaibu stated.