The Federal Government (FG) said on Tuesday that “scrupulous” opposition politicians have “legally hamstrung” President Muhammadu Buhari from providing any relief to Nigerians due to the scarcity of ₦200, ₦500, and ₦1,000 bank notes.
Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, stated this at the 23rd Edition of the President Muhammadu Buhari Administration Scorecard in Abuja.
He said the opposition parties have turned the scarcity of new naira notes into a political game, “preferring to make Nigerians suffer more on the altar of unconscionable political gamesmanship”.
BizWatch Nigeria reports that on Monday, five political parties and three state governments began legal battles over the February 10 deadline for the validity of three old naira notes.
While the governments of Kaduna, Kogi, and Zamfara went to the Supreme Court to seek an extension to the February 10, 2023 deadline, five political parties took the matter to the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court and obtained an order prohibiting FG and the apex bank from extending the deadline.
“Recall, ladies and gentlemen, that after his meeting with Progressives’ Governors on Friday, Mr. President Buhari urged citizens to give him a seven-day window to resolve the currency crunch that has emanated from the implementation of the Naira redesign policy,” Lai Mohammed said.
“Unfortunately, on Monday (yesterday), some opposition political parties ran to court to obtain an injunction restraining Mr. President and the CBN from extending the Feb. 10 deadline for Nigerians to exchange their old notes for new ones.
“The court action came after a number of opposition parties threatened to boycott the 2023 general elections if the deadline was extended.
“These curious actions by the parties concerned is clear evidence that the opposition has turned this whole issue into a political game, preferring to make Nigerians suffer more on the altar of an unconscionable political gamesmanship.
“Or how else can one explain the fact that these unscrupulous opposition parties do not want any action that could reduce the pains being experienced by Nigerians?
“How else can one explain the fact that they have decided to legally hamstring Mr. President, in particular, from providing any relief for Nigerians suffering from the cash crunch?
“It is bad politics when you put the interest of desperate political parties over and above that of Nigerians, the same Nigerians whose votes you earnestly seek.”
Despite the opposition parties’ “bad politicking,” the minister stated that the government is willing and able to take decisive steps to bring relief to Nigerians as soon as possible.