According to the Center for the Promotion of Private Enterprise (CPPE), the Nigerian economy has lost N20 trillion because 70% of the country’s cash has being sucked out.
The Center also stated that the country’s prolonged, acute cash scarcity has not only crippled economic activities but is now a major threat to the livelihoods of most Nigerians.
Yusuf observed that as payment system challenges persist, retail transactions across sectors have become nerve-racking and distressing. He claimed that the Nigerian economy has lost an estimated N20 trillion since the start of the cash crisis.
These losses resulted from the slowing of economic activity, the stifling of trade, the suffocation of the informal economy, the contraction of the agricultural sector, and the paralysis of the rural economy. There have also been hundreds of thousands of job losses.
According to the CPPE, millions of citizens have fallen into poverty and destitution as a result of the disruptions and tribulations caused by the currency redesign policy, particularly the mopping up of more than 70% of cash in the economy. According to the report, Nigerians have not been traumatized in recent memory.
According to a press release issued by the Center’s CEO, Dr. Muda Yusuf, the economy is gradually grinding to a halt due to the failure of payment systems across all platforms.
“Digital platforms are performing sub-optimally because of congestion; physical cash is unavailable because the CBN has sucked away over 70% of cash in the economy; and the expected relief from the Supreme Court judgment has not materialized. As a result, the citizens are in a bind,” he explained.
He stated that commercial banks claim that the CBN has not officially communicated the Supreme Court’s judgment to them for any actions; the President has remained unconcerned about the judgment; and the market women and men are waiting to hear from President Buhari or the CBN governor about the legal tender status of old currency notes.
Surprisingly, the federal government and the CBN appear hesitant or unwilling to comply with the Supreme Court’s decision. This is very disturbing and inexplicable,” he noted.
Meanwhile, Nigerians continue to suffer as a result of the acute cash shortage caused by the rejection of old currency notes by market operators, the refusal of banks to accept the old notes, the presidency’s silence on the Supreme Court judgment, and the absence of an official pronouncement by the CBN on the issue.
“Evidently, President Buhari did not seem to appreciate the gravity and enormity of the suffering and pain that Nigerians have been experiencing since the onset of the currency redesign policy. We again implore the President to intervene immediately to end the devastating and traumatic consequences of a repressive, poorly conceptualized, and poorly implemented currency redesign policy. The following immediate actions are requested.”
“The CBN should be directed to immediately notify the Nigerian public that the old currency notes [along with the new notes] remain legal tender until December 31, 2023, in accordance with the Supreme Court’s decision.”
“The CBN should be directed to communicate to the banks the outcome of the Supreme Court’s judgment and to affirm compliance with the judgment.”
“The president should publicly sympathize with Nigerians for the unjustified and inexcusable pain and suffering caused by the currency redesign policy.”