CBN Cash Withdrawal Limits: 25 Days To January Take-off, Senate Wants Policy Reviewed

The Nigerian Senate has called for a review of the cash withdrawal limits policy of Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), barely 25 days to the January 9 take-off.

The call followed the concern in some quarters over the withdrawal limits of N100,000 per week for individuals and N500, 000 per week for corporate bodies.

The Senate has, therefore, asked for an upward review of  the policy.


It warned that the policy, in its present form, could spark unrest and revolt among Nigerians, especially those in the rural areas if not properly managed.

It also directed its Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions to embark on aggressive oversight of CBN to ensure flexible adjustment of the withdrawal limits and to periodically report outcome to the Senate.

The Red Chamber, however, supported the CBN in its continuous implementation of transformational payments and financial industry initiatives.

Last week, in its deliberation, the Green Chamber of the National Assembly, the House of Representatives, had called on the apex bank to suspend the policy.



The Senate adopted the resolutions after heated debate by Senators on the proposed policy during consideration and adoption of a report of its Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions.

The chairman of the Committee, Senator Uba Sani (APC Kaduna Central), had in the report argued that the planned cash  withdrawal limit was a well-conceived idea by the CBN for transformation of the nation’s economy and that the action falls within the  mandate of the apex bank as provided for in section 2(d) and 47 of its extant Act.

However, during general debate on the report and recommendations later adopted as resolutions, many of the Senators kicked against the timing of the policy, warning that it may lead to mass revolt in the rural areas across the country.

First to kick against it was Senator Ajibola Basiru (APC, Osun Central) , who said the proposed threshold of N100,000 and N500, 000 withdrawal per week for individuals and corporate bodies respectively was unrealistic.

“Laws are made for people and not people made or created for law. If CBN is acting under section 2(d) and 47 of its extant Act to make life difficult for Nigerians through a policy, as representatives of the people, we need to intervene.

“Such intervention from us is to make CBN realise that the proposed cash withdrawal limits policy is unrealistic and very injurious and detrimental to the well-being of rural dwellers, many of whom are our constituents.

“Report of this committee recommending the policy to us and, by extension, to Nigerians through suggestion of flexibility in implementation is vague, nebulous and means nothing,” he said.

Senator Adamu Aliero (PDP, Kebbi Central), in his own contribution, said the picture painted by the committee is nothing but an ideal picture of what the economy should be, which is far cry from what the economy is in reality as far as Nigeria is concerned.

“The proposed CBN policy does not capture the informal sector and is very detrimental to the livelihoods of rural dwellers who are not into e-banking.

“Public outcry against the policy is too much, requiring serious caution as far as implementation is concerned because Nigeria’s economy is predominantly rural”, he said.

Senator Adamu Bulkachuwa (PDP, Bauchi North) warned that the proposed policy, if not suspended, may trigger revolt from rural dwellers.

He said recommendations made by the Senate Committee on Banking on the policy which were later adopted as resolutions made no sense to him.

“Senate committee recommendations on the proposed CBN policy, is nothing but trying to pull wool over the eyes of Nigerians”, he said.

Even Senator Orji Uzor Kalu (APC Abia North), who as a member of the Committee and signed the adopted report, kicked against it in his contribution.

He said: “N100,000 per week for individuals and N500,000 per week for corporate bodies are too small. The N500, 000 per day for individuals and N3 million per day for corporate bodies being implemented in Abia, Lagos, Ogun, Rivers, FCT, etc, should be sustained across the country for now.”

Other Senators who kicked against implementation of the policy, as planned from January 9, 2023, were Biodun Olujimi (PDP, Ekiti South), Chukwuka Utazi (PDP, Enugu North), Stella Oduah (PDP, Anambra North), and Ibrahim Hassan Hadeija (APC, Jigawa North East) among others.

However, Senators Yusuf A. Yusuf (APC, Taraba Central), Degi  Eremienyo (APC, Bayelsa East), Francis Alimikhena (PDP, Edo North) supported it in their separate contributions.


Circulation of new naira notes kicks off today

Forty five days after the Central Bank of Nigeria announced that it will be redesigning the N200, N500 and N1,000 notes, commercial banks and other financial institutions in the country are expected to commence the dispensing of the new notes today.

President Muhammadu Buhari who gave his backing to the CBN despite oppositions from the political class as well as some other Nigerians, had on November 23, 2022 unveiled the new naira notes, weeks before the December 15, 2022 date set by the apex bank for banks to commence disbursing the newly redesigned notes.

CBN governor, Godwin Emefilele, had announced the plan to redesign the higher denominated notes as a way of cubing inflation as well as reducing the amount of cash outside of the banking halls. Since the redesigning of the naira was announced, more than N2 trillion had been pulled back into the vaults of banks as well as the CBN.

Last week, the CBN governor had assured that all banks across the country have received the new notes and should begin to disburse them.

Noting that the apex bank is more than prepared for the transition from the old notes to the new notes within the stipulated period, he said “the banks have received the new cash and will start dispensing them.

“I can assure everyone that it will go round but let us be calm and be patient. Luckily the old currency continues to be legal tender until January 31 2023. both the painted and unpainted will be legal tender and by January 31 unpainted ones will not be useful to you.”


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