Some leaders of the parties said the PDP was planning to make the naira handy for distribution during the 2015 general elections.
The Congress for Progressive Change, the Action Congress of Nigeria and the All Nigeria Peoples Party said the speedy approval of the proposal by President Goodluck Jonathan showed that there was an ulterior motive behind the move.
The National Publicity Secretary, ANPP, Mr. Emma Eneukwu, told reporter that the PDP proposed the N5000 note, through its government, in order to make cash handy and huge amounts of money more movable during the elections.
He said, “We are aware that the PDP is putting a lot of plans in place. One of them is the introduction of the N5000 note purposely for the election. They want to make more money handy for distribution.
“The new trend contradicts the earlier position of the Central Bank of Nigeria on its cash-less policy. The CBN governor suddenly introduced a more valuable note to actualise the programme of the PDP. It is geared towards the 2015 elections.
“The CBN’s insistence on going ahead with the plan, despite the huge public outcry, shows that the government is pursuing an agenda.”
His CPC counterpart, Mr. Rotimi Fashakin, said it was in order for people to raise concerns about the policy due to the spate of corruption in the system. He added that the speedy approval by the presidency was suspicious.
He said, “Peoples’ fears may not be unfounded because of the way the president gave his assent to the proposal without going through the normal rigorous process. We are in a corrupt regime and with a government that has high tendency for corruption, the people cannot but fear over an ulterior motive.”
Similarly, the National Publicity Secretary, ACN, Dr. Lai Mohammed, in a separate interview, accused Jonathan of ignoring the opinion of the majority for the interest of the minority.
He described programmes of the Federal Government as anti-people, saying the introduction would lead to inflation and consequent hardship on the masses.
Mohammed said, “It shows that the government is not responsive and accountable to the people. If truly it is accountable and the people actually voted for the government, then it will show regard for their interests.
“The president should remember that he is only holding power in trust for the people. Political and economic experts have warned that the introduction would lead to inflation but the presidency has brushed aside the valid arguments in favour of a few political elite.
“This shows that the president lacks regard for the people; he is not responsive, his programmes are anti-people.”
Effort to get the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Olisa Metuh to react to the allegation was unsuccessful as he did not pick calls to his phone or respond to a text message as at press time.
Called from Punch