…says mint is producing more new Naira notes
The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN Godwin Emefiele has recounted how the apex bank devised several measures to stop the commercial banks from selling the bulk of the new Naira notes to their priority customers.
Addressing an emergency press conference on Friday, February 3rd, 2023 in the face of worsening shortage of the new Naira notes, Emefiele said: “When we first started, we saw that the banks were paying more of the new currencies over the counter to their priority customers, rather than giving them to their weak and vulnerable customers. We mandated them (to stop).
“We said no, from now on, do not pay the new notes over the counter, which gives you the opportunity to give them to your friends. Pay all new notes into your ATM. The ATM is a robot. Everybody queues and collects the same amount. That has worked at the initial stages.”
Speaking further, he said the banks were directed to “just feed your machines in the morning with the new notes. But if it finishes, so that people won’t complain of lack of cash, put in the old notes so that you can continue to serve your customer. But a week ago, we changed tactics and said, do not put old notes again, put only new notes.
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“We then increased the volume of disbursement of the new notes to them…those were the things we did. We directed all banks to put only new notes in the ATMS in the morning, and when it finishes, put new notes again, and that is what is currently running.”
There is adequate supply of new notes
Emefiele reiterated, “Our officials have gone around, even press people and they said there is an adequate quantity of new notes available. But let us all know that it is a process. Our mint is producing and we are supplying to the Banks and so it will continue to circulate”.
No further extension of the deadline
Emefiele also stated that there would be no further extension of the Naira swap and urged Nigerians to be calm, reassuring them that the CBN is working assiduously to address all the challenges related to the redesign of Naira notes and the unavailability of cash.
He added that undue charges by Mobile Money Operators (MMOs) and super agents would be stopped.
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Naira redesign not targeted at politicians
He further reiterated that the policy was not targeted at any politicians as alleged by some politicians.
He said: “We do see that there will be some transient or temporary pains. But we are appealing, we are begging, we are on our knees begging people to please show understanding they should be calm. In our meetings with the banks, we have told them to set up tents and chairs, and give people numbers, which I’m sure some people will say is old-fashioned.
“But at this time that we’re trying to get the currency to circulate, there should be a queuing arrangement and please be patient. The assurance we give is that it would eventually go around.
“Eventually, the limits would be raised and the limits would be removed and people would be able to conduct their exchanges and businesses in the way it has always been in the past.”