Dr. Louis Brown Ogbeifun

Accredited Mediator | Certified Professional Manager and Trainer in Workplace Conflicts


Currency Conundrum: The Chaos of Old Naira Notes and Banking Practices in Nigeria

Yesterday, I was at a filling station where a customer wanted to buy premium motor spirit with old Naira notes. The Station Manager refused to sell using old notes, leaving the guy disappointed. I inquired why the Station Manager refused the old notes. He replied, “If we collect old notes, we cannot deposit the money with our banks. We are expected to go to the Central Bank of Nigeria and register the fund before the local bank can accept any deposit.” Can one, therefore, blame any trader for not accepting the old currency notes?

In other developments, Point Of Sale (POS) machine operators blame banks for selling Naira to them at N15,000-N20,000 per every N100,000. The POS operators then add service charges as the spirit leads them individually.

There is so much confusion in the air. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) should please speak with clarity and unambiguously on the validity of the old five hundred and one thousand Naira notes, respectively, as legal tenders in line with the orders of the Supreme Court of Nigeria.

The CBN has completely lost control over commercial banks. It seems to have subtly allowed corruption to fester in our financial systems, especially within the banks, as Nigerians remain the helpless victims. It would also seem to be aiding and abetting the selling and buying of Nigeria’s currencies in the open market. Sad!

We are at a loss and do not know where to get consolation. What is wrong with the CBN issuing a circular to the banks to dispense and collect the old notes from Nigerians to December as ordered by the Supreme Court?

The more we pump our financial and the oil and gas sectors, the more leakages we have, and one wonders if these artificial leakages are not hemorrhaging too badly to snuff life out of the citizens. We cannot breathe! We need oxygen!

Grace and peace!!!