Nigeria’s new banknotes have begun circulating as planned but supply across the country, however, was scanty or non-existent in some areas, The Guardian reports on Friday. Banks, which received an influx of customers, some of who deposited old cash in exchange for a replacement, complained of low disbursement.
Across-the-counter withdrawals were mainly in old notes, even as customers requested payment in the new currencies.
A few banks that had supply rationed the new notes.
At Coker, Lagos, a customer, who requested N120,000, received N4,000 in new N500 bills, while the balance came in the old notes.
Supply was scarce, with Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) across the country still dispensing old notes.
The Guardian says it was informed that the machines were yet to be reconfigured.
While banks grappled with limited supply, some early handlers of the notes had difficulty transacting with them as some individuals, especially in informal settings, turned down the bills.
“After leaving the banking hall, I made efforts to spend the new notes but people rejected them,” a bank customer in Lagos, told The Guardian.
Earlier in the day, a video showing a bus operator in Lagos rejecting the new N1,000 bill from a female passenger went viral.
The lady, who was headed for work, had boarded the commercial vehicle but was required to disembark.
As Nigerians await full circulation of the freshly styled naira, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor, Godwin Emefiele, wrote the House of Representatives, assuring MPs that he would soon brief the lawmakers on the bank’s monetary policies.
Emefiele had been expected to appear before the legislators, Thursday to defend the apex bank’s withdrawal limit, a follow-up policy to the naira redesign.
The limit, which is scheduled to begin on January 9, 2023, would reduce maximum daily cash withdrawal to N20,000.