The Senate on Tuesday passed for second reading a bill seeking some amendments to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Act, including a proposal to increase the bank’s authorised capital to N1 trillion.

The current CBN Act, in section 4 (1), puts the authorised capital at N100 billion, which lawmakers said had over the years been eroded by devaluation of the naira.

The Red Chamber also sought to amend Section 8 (2) of the apex bank’s law to provide for a single non-renewable term of 6 years for the governors and their deputies.

The bill, sponsored by Mukhail Adetokunbo Abiru (APC, Lagos) and 41 others, also seeks to mandate the CBN to give a notice of at least one year to replace the existing banknotes while allowing both the old and new currency notes to serve as legal tender simultaneously for two years.

The proposed amendment sought to compel the federal government to repay the loans it received from the CBN, under Ways and Means advances, within three months from the date they are made available.

Senator Abiru, in his lead debate, said the bill, if passed into law, will further strengthen the CBN to carry out its principal objectives in line with section 2 of the act which is to ensure monetary and price stability, issue legal tender currency in Nigeria, maintain external reserves to safeguard the international value of the legal tender currency, and promote a sound financial system in Nigeria.

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