The Nigerian Bar Association, NBA,Firday, vowed to drag the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, to court should it insist on going ahead with the proposed introduction of N5000 currency note.
The legal body which made the declaration in a communiqué it issued at the end of its 52nd annual conference in Abuja yesterday maintained that the idea was nothing but “a shallow, poorly thought-out, hare-brained initiative by the CBN.”
It argued that introducing N5000 currency note would “devalue the naira, diminish the lives of Nigerians and push corruption and money laundering to new unimaginable heights.”
While opposing the idea, NBA in the communiqué which was read by its immediate past national president, Mr J.B Daudu, SAN, commended the Senate for calling the apex bank to order, saying CBN ought to have firstly submitted such measure for legislative approval.
It said: “NBA notes the argument of the CBN that this measure or innovation will not promote inflation and rejects same on the ground that the realities in the Nigerian economic situation cannot be found in the Western business models that CBN officials are familiar with; this measure will bring and mete unimaginable hardship to Nigerians as the measure is a cunning strategy aimed at devaluating the Naira wholesale. We may well see a N10, 000 or N20, 000 notes soon.
“NBA contends that such a measure that will affect the lives of Nigerians in many ways is not a mere fiscal measure that the CBN can claim exclusive jurisdiction over, on the contrary, it is a legislative matter, with ramifications on the lives of all Nigerians that is within the sole legislative province of the National Assembly. Such far-reaching fiscal or currency measures are beyond the competence or purview of the CBN.
“The CBN is not the 4th arm of Government for there is no 4th arm of Government. CBN is advised to submit the measure for legislative approval which the National Assembly is expected to consider in line with the wishes of majority of Nigerians.