The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced the extension of the legal tender status for the old N200, N500, and N1,000 notes indefinitely. This decision diverges from the initially set deadline of ceasing the legal tender validity for the old notes by December 31, 2023.
The new currency notes were introduced last year with the old ones set to cease as legal tenders this December but the apex bank on Tuesday, November 14, said “the legal tender status deadline of the old design of N200, N500 and N1,000 denominations, ad infinitum.”
It explained that the move is in line with international best practices and “to forestall a repeat of earlier experiences.”
“Thus, all banknotes issued by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), in accordance with Section 20(5) of the CBN Act 2007, will continue to remain legal tender, ad infinitum, even beyond the initial December 31, 2023, deadline. The Central Bank of Nigeria is working with the relevant authorities to vacate the subsisting court ruling on the same subject.”
In a statement, the bank’s Director, Corporate Communications Isa AbdulMumin said the CBN branches will continue to issue and accept all denominations of the bank notes, old and redesigned, to and from deposit money banks (DMBs).
“The general public is enjoined to continue to accept all Naira banknotes (old or redesigned) for day-to-day transactions and handle these banknotes with utmost care, to safeguard and protect the lifecycle of the banknotes,” it added.
“Also, the general public is encouraged to embrace alternative modes of payment, e-channels, for day-to-day transactions.”