As the new naira notes went into circulation on Thursday, Nigerian banks are struggling to provide it in abundance as demands overshoot supply in banking halls.
Ripples Nigeria had reported that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directed banks to start releasing the newly redesigned naira notes on December 15, 2022, to commence the phase out of the old currency.
The central bank had redesigned the N200, N500 and N1000 notes, which will replace the old naira notes expected to be phased out by January 31, 2022.
In several communications, officials of the central bank and its governor, Godwin Emefiele, have insisted that the deadline for old naira notes to become illegal tender won’t change.
However, the timeframe has been thrown into uncertainty as banks continue to dispense the old naira notes, alongside the new currency, to Nigerians in banking halls, and ATMs Ripples Nigeria gathered on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
This indicates a shortage of the new naira notes among banks. Speaking to some banking agents in areas of Lagos and Ogun States, they said obtaining the new currency has been almost impossible.
“The banks are not giving us,” one of the banking agents said, while another Point of Sale (PoS) agent disclosed that the banks are providing more old naira notes than the newly redesigned notes.
As a result, the banking agents, who obtain their cash direct from the commercial banks are forced to continue handing the old currency to persons withdrawing money from PoS as of Friday.
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