Naira Notes: FG Dismisses Supreme Court Order, Says It Lacks Jurisdiction
The Federal Government has dismissed the judgement by the Supreme Court on the implementation of the new Naira notes saying the Apex Court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the suit filed by Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara states against the February 10 deadline set by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for the use of the old notes.
It also asked the apex court to dismiss the suit.
The Supreme Court led by Justice John Okoro on Wednesday, temporarily halted the withdrawal of old Naira notes, following a suit filed by Kaduna, Kogi and Zamfara states.
The seven-member panel temporarily ruled in favour of the three state governments against the federal government’s implementation of the February 10 deadline for the use of the old naira notes, pending the determination of the suit.
However, the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, in a preliminary objection filed through his lawyers, Mahmud Magaji and Tijanni Gazali on Wednesday night, argued that the supreme court lacks the jurisdiction to entertain the matter.
He also contended that “the plaintiffs have equally not shown reasonable cause of action against the defendant”.
According to the AGF, the suit ought to have been instituted before a federal high court and not the supreme court as done by the plaintiffs.
“The plaintiffs’ suit is about the power vested on the Central Bank of Nigeria by the Central Bank of Nigeria Act, 2007 to call in its banknotes and introduce new ones.
“This suit as presently constituted falls under section 251(1)(a)(p)(q) & (r) of the Constitution (exclusive jurisdiction of the Federal High Court) by virtue of the subject matter and parties.
“The instant suit is an abuse of the judicial process. That it is in the interest of justice to strike out this suit. That the plaintiffs will not be prejudiced if this preliminary objection is upheld.
“The plaintiffs have no grievance whatsoever against the Federation of Nigeria. This suit has disclosed no dispute that invokes this court’s original jurisdiction as constitutionally defined.
“This suit is an abuse of the judicial process. The plaintiffs have no locus standi to institute this action. The plaintiffs have no reasonable cause of action against the defendant,” the notice reads.
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