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States insist on contempt charge against Malami and Emefiele

Three states have finalised arrangements to initiate contempt proceedings against the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, SAN, and the Central Bank Governor Godwin Emefiele.

This is despite the Monday night directive to commercial banks to accept and dispense the old naira notes.

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PUNCH reports that the lead counsel for Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara states, Abdulhakeem Mustapha, SAN, disclosed this in a press statement released by the apex bank.Information Guide Nigeria

The bank directed banks to accept the old naira notes was a mere camouflage to give the impression of compliance.

Recall that on March 3 The Supreme Court had in its judgment extended the legal tender status of the old N200, N500, and N1,000 notes until December 31.

However, the AGF and the CBN governor failed to comply with the order despite pressure from Nigerians.

PUNCH reefuse that banks also refused to accept or dispense the old notes, citing the lack of directives from the CBN regarding the judgment.

In addition to the enforcement of the judgment, the plaintiffs served the enrolled order and Certified True Copy of the Supreme Court judgment on the AGF penultimate Friday.

The plaintiffs threatened to file contempt charges against the two officials should they fail to obey the apex court order.

The apex bank in a statement signed by the acting Director of Corporate Communications, CBN, Isa AbdulMumin, read,

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“In compliance with the established tradition of obedience to court orders and sustenance of the rule of law principle that characterized the government of President Muhammadu Buhari, and by extension, the operations of the Central Bank of Nigeria, as a regulator, Deposit Money Banks operating in Nigeria have been directed to comply with the Supreme Court judgment of March 3, 2023.NYSC Portal

“Accordingly, the CBN met with the Bankers’ Committee and has directed that the old N200, N500 and N1000 banknotes remain legal tender alongside the redesigned banknotes till December 31, 2023. Consequently, all concerned are directed to conform accordingly.’’

According to to PUNCH, the lead counsel, Abdulhakeem Mustapha insisted that the apex court had not complied with the Supreme Court order.

He stated, “The press release made by the Central Bank of Nigeria is just a mere camouflage just to give an impression of compliance. There is nothing like that. And our clients, Kaduna, Kogi, Zamfara, and states have told us that we should go on with the already initiated contempt of proceedings against the Attorney General and the Central Bank Governor.

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“The decision of the Supreme Court has not been complied with. They are in contempt of court. We are going to reactivate the already-initiated contempt proceedings. There is a legal process around it.”

Speaking about when the proceedings will commence, he said, “There is a legal process around it; over time you are going to see it. I can confirm to you that we have a clear mandate for our clients to proceed with the already initiated contempt proceedings because it is clear to all and sundry that the CBN is just playing pranks.

“They are not sincere. And they are acting as if they are above the law. The constitution is clear that all organs and everybody must ensure that the decision of the Supreme Court is enforced.”

PUNCH reports that calls to the AGF media aide, Umar Gwandu rang out.  The AGF could not be reached on Thursday for comments on the move to commence contempt proceedings against him.

His aide was yet to respond to a text message sent to him on the issue as of the time of filing this report.

PUNCH also reports that the CBN spokesman did not respond to calls and a text message sent to him on the plan to cite Emefiele for contempt.JAMB Result

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Idongesit Akpa-Ayang

Idongesit is a graduate of Communication Arts, University of Uyo. Currently working as a news reporter at InfoGuide Nigeria.

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