Currency Mutilation: Offenders to face litigation, jail term

Mutilated 100 naira note

…CBN to introduce mobile courts soon


By Chioma Obinagwam

Mutilators of Nigeria’s currency notes, Naira, will soon come under litigation and face jail terms as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Nigeria’s apex bank, plans to institute mobile courts across the country to try people that mutilate or trade the Naira in parties or any place.

Mr Isaac Okorafor, Director, Communications Department of the at the bank who represented the Governor of CBN, Mr. Godwin Emefiele at their special day during the recent International trade fair in Lagos said CBN is working with the police and other security agencies like Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to arrest all that indulge in this act.

This is coming on the heels of the recent resolution by the House of Representatives (Nigeria’s lower legislative chamber), urging CBN to replace mutilated currency notes, particularly, those in the lower denomination with new ones.

CBN logo


The apex bank noted that the move is part of its measures to preserve the local currency.

Stressing further, he said that the Judiciary is also working to set up mobile courts to give immediate judgement to any offender.

Speaking further Okorafor said, “it is an offense for anybody to sell or squeeze the Naira, spray or dance on it in parties”, adding that some people have customized guns to spray the Naira, and that it is only in Nigeria that this act takes place.

He, therefore, advised that Nigerians should have respect for the Naira, keep it clean and avoid going to jail.

CBN’s unrelenting efforts
The CBN has, however, not rested on it’s oars even as recent report by Business Hilights Intelligence Unit (BHIU), the research arm of Business Hilights Publications, showed that “Business operators in the range of MSMEs, SMEs and other unclassified small holder businesses forfeit daily transactions averaging N1billion due to either rejection of payments or changes made with mutilated naira notes.”


CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele

Some measures adopted by the bank to stall this menace include the reduction in the amount it charges banks for sorting the dirty notes for clean ones from N12,000 to N1,000 per box (N10,000) and subsequently increased to N2000 after the March 2018 deadline as well as withdrawing the unfit notes from circulations rather than depending mainly on the commercial banks on the task.

The bank has also started engaging associations in various markets to encourage traders to change genuine dirty notes for new ones, which would not attract any cost to traders.

The apex bank has successfully initiated the campaign against mutilated currency in Kano, Kaduna and Abuja and also intends to bring it to the south.

On hoarding and selling of new currency notes, Okorafor said the serial numbers of the ones given out to the public would be used to trace whoever perpetuated the act.

In order check the menace of hoarding and selling of new currency, it employed the use of serial numbers of the ones given out to the public to track down perpetrators.

Furthermore, the CBN has also produced commercials for the media aimed at enlightening Nigerians of the need and benefits of handling the Naira (one of the national symbols) with care.




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