NASS: New CBN bill proposes N500,000 as minimum fine for naira abuse 

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The Nigerian Senate has introduced a bill to amend the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007, proposing a 900% hike in minimum fine for naira abuse from N50,000 to N500,000. 

The proposed legislation, sponsored by Senator Mukhail Adetokunbo Abiru (Lagos East), seeks to significantly increase penalties for naira abuse. The bill was earlier sponsored by Senator Darlington Nwokocha before he was sacked from office by an Appeal Court in Lagos. 

The bill, titled ‘A Bill for an Act to Amend the Central Bank of Nigeria Act No. 7 of 2007,’ aims to empower the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to better fulfil its principal objectives. 

N500,000 minimum fine for refusing naira payment 

The bill proposes a minimum fine of N500,000 or six months imprisonment for anyone who refuses to accept naira as a means of payment in Nigeria. 

The amendment bill read: “A person who refuses to accept the Naira as a means of payment or who prices or denominates the cost of any product or service or consummates any non-export business in Nigeria other than in Naira is guilty of an offence (unless the Bank has by written circular published in the National Gazette permitted such transaction) and liable on conviction to a fine of N500, 000 or 6 months imprisonment.” 

N500,000 minimum fine for buying naira notes 

The Senate also proposes a new minimum fine of N500,000 for anyone who engages in the buying and selling of naira notes. 

The amendment bill read: “A person who buys/sells Naira notes at a mark-up is guilty of an offence and shall on conviction be liable to imprisonment for a term not less than six months or to a fine not less than N500,000 or Ten per cent of the transaction value (whichever is higher), or six (6) months imprisonment.” 

These proposed changes are designed to deter the misuse and abuse of the national currency, ensuring that the naira remains the principal means of transaction within the country. 

By imposing stiffer penalties, the Senate aims to reinforce the sanctity of the naira and uphold its value in the face of economic challenges. 

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