Femi Falana, a renowned Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) has revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari-led government did not follow the due constitutional process before going ahead with its decision to redesign the naira.
Falana in a statement released on Sunday argued that the court could declare illegal the move by President Buhari and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to redesign the naira as it did not follow the due procedure as referred to in the constitution.
The human rights lawyer stated that the President should have first sent a money bill to the National Assembly for approval before implementing the policy, arguing that mere endorsement by President Buhari wasn’t enough to go ahead with the vital decision.
“The official endorsement is not sufficient as the President is mandatorily required to present a Money Bill to the National Assembly for the withdrawal of the billions of Naira from the public fund earmarked for the printing of the new naira notes,” the statement read.
“Specifically, section 59 of the Constitution requires “an appropriation bill or supplementary bill including any other bill for the payment, issue or withdrawal from the Consolidated Revenue Fund or any other public fund of the Federation of any money charged thereon or any alteration in the amount of such payment, issue or withdrawal…”
FG had in October announced that it will redesign N200, N500 and N1,000 notes of the countries currencies in circulation in an attempt to address the economic woes bedeviling the country.
However, the Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, criticized the CBN policy, claiming that the decision was taken in isolation and without her knowledge.
Responding to the minister’s worry the presidency said it gave CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele the go-ahead to redesign the country’s banknotes.