CBN orders banks to pay new naira notes over the counter — N20k maximum

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has instructed commercial banks to begin providing the redesigned naira notes to customers over the counter.

In a statement released on Thursday, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) said that the new instruction aims to alleviate the difficulties Nigerians are having in gaining access to the new banknotes and minimize lines at ATMs countrywide.

Since announcing the naira redesign strategy in October of last year, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has made multiple reversals.

Following the announcement and introduction of the redesigned naira notes into circulation on 15 December 2022, the central bank instructed deposit money banks (DMBs) to cease issuing the new notes over the counter.

But the mandate, along with the policy’s numerous other limitations, has caused difficulty for Nigerians, who are scrambling to deposit their old notes (N200, N500, and N1,000) before the new February 10 deadline.

Residents have also been observed swarming ATMs in an attempt to obtain the new currency.

The apex bank stated in a statement signed by Osita Nwanisobi, director of corporate communications for the CBN, that it was addressing issues with access to the redesigned notes.

“We have equally noticed the queues at automated teller machines (ATMs) across the country and an upward trend in the cases of people stocking and aggregating the newly introduced banknotes they serially obtain from ATMs for reasons best known to them,” CBN said.

“While reiterating our commitment to Nigerians to ensure the effective distribution of the newly introduced naira banknotes, we urge them to exercise patience as the CBN is working assiduously to address the challenge of queues at ATMs. In line with this resolve, the Govenor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has directed deposit money banks (DMBs) to commence the payment of the redesigned naira notes over the counter, subject to a maximum daily payout limit of N20,000.

“We also admonish members of the public to embrace and adopt other payment channels for their transactions.”

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