Old Notes: Buhari's aide, Bashir Ahmad blasts El-Rufai, Ganduje, others for expressing anger over stolen public funds


Bashir Ahmad, the Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Digital Communications, has lambasted Governors Nasir El-Rufai and Abdullahi Ganduje for their angry outbursts over the decision of the regime and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to phase out old naira notes.


In a series of social media posts on Thursday, the presidential aide claimed both Governor El-Rufai and Ganduje are only angry because the money they have stolen and stashed are now worthless due to the regime’s stance that the old notes are no longer tenderable despite Supreme Court judgment temporarily stopping the plan.


Both governors have both filed a motion for their states, Kaduna and Kano, to be joined to an open suit brought by some other states in the country before the Supreme Court suit seeking to stop the regime from going forward with the plan.


The presidential media aide also dared both governors to directly deposit the alleged stashed money they are claiming were legally gotten to CBN and Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to investigate the legality of the money.


“They have stashed money and now they’re useless,” Mr Ahmad said in the series of posts.


He added: “That’s the reason for all the fuming. Ganduje and co don’t care about the masses. If the money Ganduje and friends are shouting about is legit, why don’t they deposit it to CBN, the EFCC and NFIU will wait for them to verify.”


Mr Ahmad’s words were in response to Messrs El-Rufai and Ganduje’s constant criticism of the regime’s plan to render the old N200, N500, N1000 notes an illegal tender ahead of the February 25 presidential election, with many speculating the policy was put to punish some candidates during the poll.


They have also ordered residents in their states to continue carrying out their day-to-day transactions with the old notes and even Mr Ganduje had threatened businesses in Kano, including commercial banks, with government sanctions if they refused to accept the currency.


On Thursday, Mr Buhari ordered the CBN to begin releasing only the old N200 note into circulation with the new one for next 60 days while reaffirming that the higher notes, N500 and N1000 are now illegal tender, a move that many including House  Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila characterized as “disregard” for rule of law.

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