Abuse of naira: Ogun monarch suspended for two months

THE Olu of Owode-Egba, Oba Kolawole Sowemimo, in Obafemi/Owode Local Government Area of Ogun State, has been suspended by the Egba traditional council for openly defacing the naira at a social function.

The monarch had been warned earlier by the National Orientation Agency (NOA) after a video of him decorating a Fuji musician, Wasiu Ayinde Marshall, popularly known as K1, with knitted naira notes had gone viral.

According to the NOA, the monarch’s action contravened Section 21 (3) of the Central Bank of Nigeria Act 2007 as amended, which stipulates that spraying of, dancing, or matching on the naira or any note issued by the bank during social occasions or otherwise, constitutes abuse and defacing of the naira or such note and shall be punishable under the law by fines or imprisonment, or both.

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The ICIR earlier reported that an actress had also been arrested for allegedly spraying new naira notes at a party.
The monarch was reportedly suspended on Friday, February 16, 2024, at the Egba Traditional Council February statutory meeting, chaired by the Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Gbadebo.

Announcing the monarch’s suspension, Olowu if Owu, Oba Saka Matemilola, said that Sowemimo should not be invited or seen at any government or public function as a traditional ruler and, for three months, should not receive any payment.

The committee made its decisions after examining the viral video.

Responding, Oba Sowemimo noted that the council’s decision was fair.

“I totally accept the verdict of the council because it is the person that we love that we chastise, so I am good with the decision… when I was asked if I had anything to say, I stood up and apologised for whatever I had done wrong and the suspension which was earlier announced to be for three months without salaries was reduced to two months,”  he stated.

Fatimah Quadri is a Journalist and a Fact-checker at The ICIR. She has written news articles, fact-checks, explainers, and media literacy in an effort to combat information disinformation.
She can be reached at sunmibola_q on X or [email protected]

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