The Central Financial institution of Nigeria (CBN) has opposed a swimsuit earlier than the federal excessive courtroom in Lagos looking for to take away Ajami (Arabic) inscriptions on the naira notes.
CBN instructed the courtroom that it’ll value some huge cash to discard current notes and print new ones with out Ajami.
It additionally stated Ajami isn’t an emblem or mark of Islam, however an inscription to assist non-English audio system who’re Ajami literate.
The apex financial institution made the submission in a counter-affidavit to a swimsuit filed by Malcolm Omirhobo, a Lagos-based lawyer, earlier than Mohammed Liman, presiding choose over the case.
In January 2020, Omirhobo had filed a swimsuit in opposition to the federal authorities, CBN, and lawyer common of the federation over Arabic inscription on naira notes.
Omirhobo argued that Nigeria is a secular nation and urged the courtroom to declare it unlawful, illegal, and unconstitutional for Arabic language to be inscribed on naira notes fairly than English language or Hausa, Yoruba and Igbo.
Nevertheless, in its counter-affidavit deposed by Abiola Lawal, CBN stated: “Ajami inscriptions on a few of the nation’s currencies don’t connote any spiritual statements or Arabian alignment.
“The inscriptions on the nation’s currencies don’t and at no time have they threatened the secular statehood of the nation or have they violated the structure of Nigeria, as each design and inscription was finalised with the approval of the related authorities our bodies.
“The naira notes retained the inscriptions with Ajami since 1973 when the title of the Nigerian foreign money was modified to naira from kilos.
“Ajami was inscribed on the nation’s foreign money by the colonialists to assist these with out Western schooling in sure elements of the nation, who, again then, constituted a bigger a part of the populace.
“Ajami isn’t an emblem or mark of Islam however an inscription to assist the populace uneducated in Western schooling in ease of commerce.”
CBN additional stated eradicating Arabic inscriptions from naira notes “would value the tax-paying Nigerians and federal authorities colossal sum of cash to discard the prevailing naira notes and print new ones in satisfaction of the plaintiff”.
Equally, the Nigerian Military opposed Omirhobo’s swimsuit looking for to take away Arabic inscriptions on the military’s emblem, urging the courtroom to throw it out.