Naira Scarcity: CBN Assures Availability of New Currency Notes in Edo, Safety of Depositors’ Funds
By Igbavboa Samuel and Osemudiamhen Gloria
The Director, Risk Management Department, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Dr. Blaise Ijebor, has empathised with Edo State residents on the crisis caused by the scarcity of Naira notes resulting from its policy to redesign higher denomination currency, the apex bank emphasised the use of electronic transactions as an alternative to ease the burden on residents.
Dr. Ijebor, who said he was in the State to assure residents that the scarcity of the Naira and its attendant crises would be over with the steady intervention of the CBN through the provision of cash to the banks for onward distribution to the public, told journalists in Benin City that depositors’ monies were safe. He sued for calmness, explaining that the crises would be short-lived.
He said, in the meantime, the public should explore alternative means of making transactions such as the use of bank applications, Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) codes, Point of Sales (PoS) services for transfer and withdrawal of cash, encouraging those without bank accounts to seize the opportunity to open an account with any bank of their choice.
According to him, “Nobody in Nigeria that paid their money into their bank accounts would lose one kobo out of their money. Their money is safe and they would get their money when they need it.” He added that the CBN on Sunday rolled out N400 million, on Monday N200 million and Tuesday, over N460 million to commercial and micro finance banks in the State.
Dr. Ijebor also stressed the need to push for a cashless society. He warned those involved in sharp practices of extorting the public especially the PoS terminal operators to desist from such acts, stressing that if caught, they would face the wrath of the law.
He encouraged the public to report anyone found exploiting the situation to the CBN Call Centre via – 08176657641 or 08176657642.
The Commissioner for Communication and Orientation, Mr. Chris Nehikhare, appealed for calm and assured the public that the State Government is working with CBN to ease the hardship faced by Edo residents. He added that the Edo Residency Card is a measure to ease trade and commerce.
Mr. Nehikhare added that the fiber optic cable laid across the State by the Government will boost internet connection and ensure the effectiveness of bank transactions in the State.
He appreciated the public for the peaceful manner with which they conducted themselves during the crises and assured that banks Automated Teller Machines (ATM) will be dispensing the new currency soon.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Media Projects, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, reiterated commitment of the State Government on improving the welfare of the people. He assured that the Government and the CBN through its agents are monitoring the disbursement of money to banks, and called for calm.