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HURIWA knocks out CBN over new withdrawal limits, says new policy can’t work

The Nigerian Human Rights Writers Association (Horewa) on Wednesday criticized the Central Bank of Nigeria over weekly cash withdrawal limits, saying the measure could not help the deterioration in the value of the naira currency.

HURIWA National Coordinator Emmanuel Onubiko said in a statement CBN Governor Godwin Imfele is chasing after the shadows that crippled Nigeria’s economy with bad fiscal policies in his nearly 10-year regime at the main bank.

The group said that instead of coming up with experimental and unnecessary policies such as redesigning the naira currency, cash withdrawal limits, among others, the main bank and the federal government should cut external loans and reduce Nigeria’s worsening external debt burden which was said by experts to be the dominant cause of depreciation. The naira against the United States dollar.

HURIWA also said that the daily point-of-sale (PoS) withdrawal cap of N20,000 will force thousands of Nigerian PoS operators out of their jobs, when the policy comes into effect nationwide from January 9, 2023.

The group criticized the policy as bad for a country with an inflation rate of 21.09%, 133 million people in multidimensional poverty, and an unemployment rate of over 33%, which means more than 23 million employable Nigerians are out of work.

The Central Bank of Nigeria on Tuesday directed depository banks and other financial institutions to ensure that weekly cash withdrawals by individuals and businesses do not exceed N100,000 and N500,000, respectively. The main bank has also pegged the maximum daily cash withdrawal via PoS terminals and Automated Teller Machine (ATM) at N200, saying only N200 denominations will be loaded into ATMs.

CBN noted that the new policy is a complement to the launch of the redesigned N200, N500 and N1000 notes by President Muhammadu Buhari on November 23, 2022.

Commenting on this, Onwubiko of HURIWA said: “The CBN under its current governor, Godwin Emefiele has gone bananas. The main bank cannot increase the value of the naira, nor can it transfer more than $550 million of trapped funds belonging to foreign airlines, forcing many On stopping flight operations into the country Manufacturers are also groaning and many are dying or relocating from Nigeria due to lack of access to forex.

“It has banned the supply of foreign currency to the Bureau de Change, among others, and now, it has introduced restrictions on withdrawals that make Nigeria look like a communist economy. However, the naira continues to fall unprecedentedly against the dollar. Emefiele must be expelled, he has exhausted his policies Shallow empiricism that has no consequence.

“The naira is known to have depreciated against the dollar from N196.92 in June 2015 to N414.72 in June 2022, exacerbating Nigeria’s external debt burden. Under President Buhari and Emphile, the naira depreciated by 52.52 percent against the US dollar, even with The country’s total external debt increased from $10.32 billion on June 30, 2015 to $40.06 billion on June 30, 2022, which is a massive increase of 288.18 percent in seven years!

“The next Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria after Imphile’s dismissal should borrow the wisdom of the World Bank which advised that to stabilize naira prices, the local currency must be allowed to respond to real pressures, and not hoarded by the Central Bank of Nigeria.

Emefili’s successor should also advise the federal government to heed the advice of experts to move away from relying on foreign aid to fund development projects in the region as a means of strengthening the naira.

HURIWA knocks out CBN over new withdrawal limits, says new policy can’t work

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