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CBN stops over-the-counter withdrawal of new naira notes

The apex bank said “This will ensure quick and wider circulation of the new notes across Nigeria.”

• January 7, 2023
New Naira notes
Naira notes

In an effort to increase circulation, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has ordered commercial banks to stock their automated teller machines (ATMs) with the newly designed naira notes, immediately stopping over-the-counter withdrawals from deposit banks.

Stating that the new directive takes effect immediately, Osita Nwasinobi, CBN’s spokesperson, told The Cable on Saturday that the measure followed complaints from Nigerians regarding their inability to access the new notes since the banks started dispensing them on December 15, 2022.

The order, according to Mr Nwasinobi, was given to disseminate the new naira notes across the country before the January 31 set deadline when the old notes must be totally phased out.

“The CBN is concerned about claims by Nigerians that they had not come in contact with the new notes and therefore, directed the banks to ensure that they load their ATMs with new notes,” Mr Nwasinobi said.

The apex bank’s spokesperson said “This will ensure quick and wider circulation of the new notes across Nigeria.”

Business analysts have termed the move a welcomed development, saying it will enable an even distribution of the new notes, as opposed to when bank officers are permitted to determine who gets the new notes.

The Gazette attempted to reach the CBN spokesperson for additional remarks but he was yet to respond to calls and messages as at the time of filing this report.

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