Mr. Mathew Ibadin, Managing Director of Badison Security Limited
The Federal Government of Nigeria has been urge to urgently begin the arrest and prosecution of some sleazy banks Managing Directors for hoarding and transacting the newly resigned naira notes in black market saying the act was nothing less than national economic sabotage.
The Managing Director of Badison Security Limited, Mr. Mathew Ibadin who made the call with the National Association of Online Security News Publishers, NAOSNP in Lagos over the weekend, said it was clear that most commercial Banks have compromised in the timely disbursement of the new naira notes hence some National Assembly members were calling for extension in the 31st January 2023 deadline given by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the return of old naira notes.
The renowned multi-award winning security expert and highly cerebra Ibadin wants a Presidential Taskforce to be set up immediately to monitor and arrest erring Bank MDs and some staff involved in hoarding and transacting the redesigned new notes with highly placed Nigerians warning that if the common man on the streets could not get the notes to spend, it could spell revolution in the country.
A visibly agitated Ibadin noted that even though the newly redesigned naira notes of one thousand naira, five hundred naira and two hundred naira were yet to circulate appropriately in the public space since the CBN gave three months notice for the validity of the old notes to seize, it was obvious that many of the deposit banks have evidently embarked on dubious transactions.
He pointed out that bundles of the same new naira notes which are not yet adequately in circulation could be seen being abused in wedding and other parties as revealed in a video currently trending in the social media.
“How did such naira abusers get the bundles of the new notes if not for the corruption of bank officials” he asked.
Last Tuesday while addressing journalists after a meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee of the CBN, the Bank’s Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele had said that there was enough quantity of the new notes to go in circulation adding that the CBN commissioned currency swap which would make it possible for banking agents to exchange the new notes with the old ones.
With these measures in place, Ibadin posited that the deposit banks must have compromised.
He has therefore called on the Federal Government to constitute a task force to unravel the mystery behind the inadequate circulation of the newly redesigned naira notes even after CBN had ordered commercial banks to stop loading their Automated Teller Machines (ATM) with old notes.
Last week, the CBN said it was on the look out for those who spray and stamp on naira notes at parties, warning that such abusers would be appropriately prosecuted for abusing our currency which is a symbol of Nigeria’s sovereignty.
The apex bank last week also had reiterated the fact that it is a global best practice to redesign the currency every five years, but here in Nigeria our naira notes were last redesigned nine years ago.
In the light of this, Ibadin while supporting President Buhari on the sanctity of 31st January, 2023 as deadline for the return of old naira notes, has urged the Federal Government to properly investigate to know the erring banks hoarding the new naira notes and giving same in bulk to some people particularly highly placed personalities.
Such offending deposit banks should be sanctioned by way of having their licences withdrawn and their managing directors prosecuted for national sabotage.
He would want the task force to be set up by the president to diligently probe into the processes of disbursing the new currency with a view to knowing who collected which amount from what bank.
He supported the CBN’s warning that anyone who sprays naira notes at parties should be arrested and prosecuted for abusing our currency stressing that the Department of State Service (DSS) could be saddled with the responsibility of tracking such naira abusers.
Besides the suspicion that stashed away naira notes in homes other than in deposit banks could be used to buy votes, Ibadin added that the culture of having much cash outside the banks has helped to increase the kidnap for ransom regime.
Economically speaking, the Badison security boss noted that much cash outside of the banks would continue to instigate inflationary trends in the system and also trigger instability in the stock market against other currencies.
He has therefore called on the National Assembly to support the CBN in ensuring that deposit banks effectively disburse the new notes rather than call for six months extension of validity period to July 31, 2023 as recently canvassed by some Senators and House of Representatives members.
The security consultant also posited that the CBN monetary policy on old currency would help the security agencies especially Police and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in their financial fraud investigations.
Meanwhile, as at the time of filling this report, information reaching NAOSNP has it that, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has extended the deadline for the use of the old notes till February 10.
CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, announced the extension in a statement signed on Sunday, 29th January, 2023.