Anger, frustration in Ibadan as scarcity of new naira notes lingers
Residents of Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, have continued to experience frustration as scarcity of the newly redesigned naira notes lingers in the ancient city.
Press recalls that the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, had last year introduced the newly redesigned N200, N500 and N1000 denominations across the country.
The apex bank had also directed commercial banks to fill their Automated Teller Machines, ATMs, with the newly redesigned naira notes, giving January 31, 2023, as the deadline for the exchange of old notes.
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Press has observed that the scarcity of the new naira notes which has been one of the topics of discussion in Ibadan in the last few days has continued to linger.
Our correspondent, who went round some major areas in Ibadan, gathered that the number of old notes in circulation is more than the number of new notes.
Some of the areas visited by our correspondent on Friday included Ojoo, Arulogun, University of Ibadan, Sango, Bodija and Agodi government secretariat.
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Others are; Oke Parde, Ogunpa, Omitowoju, Adamasingba, Mokola, Dugbe and Iyaganku.
It was gathered that banks in the areas visited and others areas in Ibadan are not stocking their ATMs with new notes, a development forcing the residents to spend more hours in the banking halls or patronise the Point of Sales, POS, operators.
A POS operator, identified as Mr. Kola, who spoke with Press in Arulogun area of Ibadan on Friday, said that the banks are not giving them new notes.
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He said, “I do not have the new notes. The banks are not giving us the new notes. This is the one I have. They said that the deadline is 31st, but instead of giving us the new notes, they gave me the old notes. This has affected our business because many customers do not want to collect the old notes.
“It is frustrating, the deadline is approaching, some marketers, shop owners and petroleum stations are rejecting the old notes already and we are not getting the new notes. It is causing anger because it is frustrating.”
Another POS operator at Adamasingba area, Mr. Taju, explained that banks dispense old notes.
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“I have the old notes. I don’t have the new notes,” he said.
Mr. Yomi Adedeji, who operates a POS at Iyaganku area, said some banks were playing smart by giving them the smaller denominations like N100 because they do not have the new notes of N200, N500 and N1000.
“I have N100 notes. That is what they gave me. We confronted the banks and they told us that they do not have the new notes. They asked me to collect the N100 notes. You can see that it is much.
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“The bank said that anyone who cannot collect the old notes should leave, some people left in annoyance,” he said.
Some of the residents expressed disappointment in the introduction of the new notes without proper strategies to phase out the old ones.
They urged the CBN to look at the subtle ways of phasing out the old notes in a way that will not cause hardship for the citizens.
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A bank customer, Mr. Adesoji Mufutau, narrated that he left the queues in annoyance because he could not withstand the frustration.
He appealed to the CBN to extend the deadline on the usage of the old naira notes considering the plight of the people in accessing it.
Another customer, Mr. Wale Atanda, told Press that he visited five commercial banks without success to withdraw his money.
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