Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan is putting a hold on plans by the Central Bank of Nigeria to introduce the controversial N5,000 note, his spokesman Reuben Abati said on Wednesday night.
Mr. Abati, said “the introduction is being suspended for now to enable the CBN do more enlightenment on the issue.”
The spokesman said the President is putting off the top note until the CBN is able to better enlighten the Nigerian public about why the proposal was made in the first place.
Governor of CBN, Lamido Sanusi, who has boisterously championed the many benefits of the N5000 note, failed to win over public opinion. Many Nigerians feared the N5,000 note will lead to inflation and aid an already corrupt government in more corrupt practices.
Sanusi debunked both claims saying the note would be handed out sparingly and the conversion of N5, N10 and N20 notes to coins would mean less printing of the smaller notes, which will save the country money.
The public remained unconvinced. Many argued that it ran contrary to the apex bank’s cashless policy and the national assembly, angling on the side of the people called on Jonathan to put a stop to the new note, which was deemed anti-people.
The Premium Times reported on Wednesday that President Jonathan, at a meeting with the National Assembly leadership, yielded saying “since it is the wish of the people” the policy can “be reversed”.