ONDO STATE GOVERNMENT FILED SUITS AGAINST FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AT THE SUPREME COURT IN RESPECT OF CBN DIRECTIVE ON LIMITATION OF CASH WITHDRAWAL FROM BANKS.
* Prayed Supreme Court to stop the implementation of the policy*
* Filed separate application to join the suit instituted by Zamfara, Kaduna and Kogi states at the Supreme Court on deadline issue by CBN on swapping of Old Naira notes for the New Notes.*
Ondo State Government has filed a suit before the Supreme Court of Nigeria, Abuja against the Federal Government in respect of the directive issued through the Central Bank of Nigeria limiting daily cash withdrawals from banks.
In an originating summon filed and signed by the Attorney General of Ondo State, Sir Charles Titiloye Ksm FCArb, on Thursday, Ondo state Government is praying the Supreme Court to stop the implementation of the directive issued by the Federal Government through the Central Bank of Nigeria on limitation of daily cash withdrawals from banks which has totally paralysed and brought to a standstill the activities of Ondo state Government and has adversely affected economic and commercial activities in the state.
Ondo state Government contended that the guideline on daily maximum cash withdrawal by the Federal Government is an infraction on the legal rights of Ondo State Government and its citizens to access funds for execution of developmental projects, small credit facilities to petty traders (who have no account in banks) and highly detrimental to daily commercial activities in the state.
Ondo State Government urged the Supreme Court to declare that the Federal Government cannot by directive issued through Central Bank of Nigeria, amend or vary an existing Act of National Assembly particularly Section 2 of Money Laundering Act which relates specifically to limitations on cash withdrawals for individual and Corporate organisation to Five (5) million Naira and Ten (10) million Naira respectively. The updated guidelines issued by CBN now places maximum cash withdrawal for individuals and corporate organisations at N500,000 and Five (5) Million Naira respectively.
Ondo state Government is asking the Supreme Court to decide whether the guidelines issued by the Federal Government on maximum daily cash withdrawal and the continuous suffering and hardship caused by the implementation of the said policy is not in conflict with the express provision of section 2 of the Money Laundering Act, Sections 20, 39 and 42 of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act.
Ondo state Government averred that while it has more than 149 Ministries, Departments and Agencies to run on daily basis in a state with more than three (3) million people, less than five hundred thousand people have bank accounts through which bank transfer can be made. Consequently the policy of the Federal Government has totally paralysed the economy of the state.
Ondo state Government averred that the citizen of Ondo state now spends precious hours at Banks ATM waiting to collect the new Naira note while citizens in the rural areas and villages without Banks and internet facilities have been shut out from receiving or transferring money to meet their daily economic needs
The Government urged the Supreme Court to intervene and stop further implementation of the said Federal Government policy.
In a related case, Ondo state Government filed an application before the Supreme Court seeking to join the suit instituted by Zamfara, Kaduna and Kogi states on the timeframe within which citizens and the Government can swap the old Naira Note for the new Naira note. In a motion on notice signed and filed on Thursday 9th of February, 2023, Sir Charles Titiloye Ksm FCArb, the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Ondo State prayed the Supreme Court to join Ondo state Government in the earlier suit filed by the said three states challenging the 10th of February, 2023 deadline for change of Old Naira Notes for New Naira notes by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
The Attorney General noted that Ondo State Government and people are currently experiencing the same excruciating economic and financial hardship occasion by the said incoherent demonetization policy currently introduced by the Federal Government through the Central Bank of Nigeria.
It will be recalled that the Governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN recently appealed to President M. Buhari to intervene and stop further implementation of the new Naira Note swap guidelines issued by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Kola Adeniyi Esq.
Special Assistant to A. G., Ondo State.