With just 11 days left to complete the distribution exercise of the newly designed N200, N500 and N1,000 naira notes, the Central Bank of Nigeria has dispatched some of its directors to raise public awareness of the move.
Dr. Abubakar Abdullahi Kure, Director of CBN/CEO of NIRSAL MicroFinance Bank, who led the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) team yesterday, led the campaign to the Ona Palace of Abaji and Chairman of the Council of Traditional Rulers of FCT, Alh. Adamu Yunusa.
He told the traditional ruler that the main bank had stepped up its awareness campaign efforts “to ensure that people bring their cash to the bank so they don’t lose it.” Dr Kure said the decision to redraw the three highest Naira denominations (N1000, N500 and N200) was in the interest of the Nigerian economy.
According to him, senior CBN officials would meet with opinion leaders, including traditional and religious leaders from across the country, who would take the message to the grassroots.
Is the CBN confused? Analysts say the delayed awareness exercise is akin to putting the cart before the horse. They say the appropriate government agencies should have embarked on the sensitization exercise much sooner, and not leave that responsibility to CBN directors to carry it out.
- Samuel Ugwu, a social affairs analyst, told Nairametrics that the CBN has apparently anticipated that the time remaining to complete the exercise is not long, so he embarked on the fire brigade’s new approach to the problem.
- He said that the National Guidance Agency should have been empowered from the start to provide proper guidance to the public, especially in rural Nigeria. Ugwu said that with 11 days remaining, there is no way the CBN could complete the exercise on time.
It should be noted that, to this day, some banks still stock their ATMs with old naira notes or a mix of old and new notes.
- Dr. Felix Echekoba, Professor at the Department of Banking and Finance at Nnamdi Azikiwe University, said as the deadline is fast approaching, the CBN will have no choice but to extend the date, otherwise many Nigerians will lose their hard-earned savings. to a system that doesn’t work.
An importer operating in the Alaba International Market, Mr. Paul Akindinobi, told Nairametrics that having CBN directors carry out an awareness exercise represents confusion in the government.
- “What is the job of the National Guidance Agency? What is the job of the Ministry of Information? Shouldn’t local governments actively participate in this exercise? she asked.