Headline News Nigeria Special Report

Scarcity of new naira notes across states

Nigerians have continued to besiege banks across the country to either deposit the old naira notes and withdraw the new notes which they said is scarce.

Ondo State

ATMs in Akure the Ondo State capital have been jam-packed with residents struggling to access the new naira notes in the bid to beat the deadline Few of the machines functioned while banks only accepted deposits from customers turning back requests for withdrawals.

POS operators made brisk business from the situation charging N500 per N5000 withdrawal.

Relating his experience , a legionnaire , Pa John Aderemi who was bittered said he left his house in Ipinsha , an outskirt town to Alagbaka in Akure around five o’clock in the morning but could not access the notes either from ATM or the banking hall after roaming for more than six hours.

Other residents, Kunle Ajibade , Monsurat Ibrahim and Felix Obi all expressed frustration with the process after spending long hours at the few ATMs dispensing calling on the CBN to address the situation.

Residents also observed that the ATMs were having hitches dispensing the new notes which they alleged was too light for the machines.

Zamfara State

Residents in Zamfara state have decried the shortage of the new Naira notes in the state.

In an interiew with customers on queue at various Banks in Gusau and Kaura Namoda the residents expressed dismay over the hardship they were experiencing due to lack of cash both.

Mr Nura Lawal while on ATM queue lamented that, the issue have disrupted their activities, saying students, businessmen and other workers were forced to abscond due to the hours they spent on queue to get the daily withdrawal limit as many people do pass night at the ATMs to withdraw money while others travel to Gusau the state capital from other local government areas where no single Bank is operating.

Sulaiman Birnin-Tsaba a bank customer who went to Gusau from Zurmi Local Government to withdraw money decried on the scarcity.

Radio Nigeria observed that, some of the customers join queue with multiple ATM cards to either enable more cash withdrawal or assist others in getting the cash.

Kwara State

The scarcity of the new naira notes is affecting business activities in most markets in Kwara State.

Some traders complained bitterly that it has been difficult getting goods from farmers as many of them refused to accept the old naira notes, despite extension of deadline on withdrawal of the old naira notes.

One of the traders,  Mr Abdulganiu Adesina, said that the new naira notes is insufficient and is affecting their businesses as they are no longer able to buy and sell easily.

Mr. Abdulganiu appealed to the Federal Government to provide sufficient new naira notes to relieve sufferings of the masses.

Alhaji Abdullateef who is also a trader at the Ipata market called for another extension of the deadline to be long enough for the new currencies to be sufficient in circulation.

Abdullateef said the 10 days extension given by the Central bank would make no difference, because most Nigerians, especially, those outside major cities and rural areas have neither seen nor handled the new naira notes.

Another trader at the same market, popularly known as  Iya Nigeria Onisu, said both buyers and sellers are passing through a lot of stress and hunger due to insufficient new naira notes.

Iya Nigeria said the situation had become very critical as the old N100, N500 and 200 notes are being rejected.

Nasarawa State

In lafia, the Nasarawa state capital, traders have been complaining of low patronage due to scarcity of the new naira notes in circulation.

Similarly, there has been scarcity of cow and goat meats in the market as Fulani herders have refused to collect the old naira notes from buyers.

Despite announcement by Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN for the extension of period to deposit the old 200,500 and 1000 naira notes in banks,some residents continue to reject the old notes,while the new ones are few in circulation.

Though most of the ATM points across banks within lafia have started dispensing the new notes, unlike over the weekend, long queues of customers could be seen waiting for hours to get to their turn to withdraw.

At the Lafia modern market, Mrs Esther Joseph and Talatu Madaki attributed the low patronage in the market to lack of the new notes in circulation.

In an interview with a butcher at the popular Lafia abattoir in Shinge,Yakubu Garba said activities are now quiet due to non supply of animals by herders.

Reporting by Dupe  Isename, Abdulrazak Kaura, Lawrence Afolabi, & Yusuf Usman: Editing by Daniel Adejo