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CBN sanctions banks over new Naira notes hoarding

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

As a measure to address New Naira notes scarcity, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has sanctioned some commercial banks and financial institutions discovered to have hoarded the new N200, N500, and N1,000 notes after a receipt from the apex bank.

It said that the banks were discovered to have hoarded the new notes from their customers, causing an artificial scarcity in the country.

The Director for CBN in Osun, Oluyemi Adeyemi, disclosed the apex bank’s punishment to these institutions on Monday during a courtesy visit to the office of the State Governor, Ademola Adeleke, in Oshogbo, the state capital.

Adeyemi, who commended the state governor for his proactive steps that saved the state from naira-related riots, stated that the CBN was aware of Nigerians’ challenges and efforts were ongoing to end the financial challenges.

“We must thank Mr. Governor for reaching out to the people, for diffusing tension, for keeping the state peaceful. We are aware of the day Mr. Governor stopped some angry youth from demonstrating and attacking the CBN office.

“On our part, we are working hard to make the new notes available. Let me say that the CBN has issued queries to some banks. I assure Nigerians that we are working hard to make the new notes available”, the CBN official added.

Meanwhile, Adeleke has set up a monitoring mechanism to ensure allocated new notes get to the populace.

Members of the monitoring team consisted of representatives from the state government and the CBN in the state.

Earlier, Adeleke warned against hoarding of new naira notes by commercial banks, stressing that a sanction of financial institutions involved in an act that he described as an anti-people ideology, would help make douse tension on Naira notes availability.

He decried the increasing shortage of the new notes, explaining that he has been deploying a state network to douse tension and ensure the safety of banks and the CBN state office.

According to the Governor, his intervention in the last few weeks had ensured that Osun state is saved from increasing conflict across some South Western states, expressing unhappiness at the current hardship the people are experiencing.

“The situation is getting out of hand. The CBN must act fast. Any bank hoarding the new notes must be sanctioned. We should not treat such banks with kid gloves.”

“My people are patient but we should not take their patience for granted. That is why I called this meeting. Why is the new notes not available? Is the supply small or inadequate? “, the Governor queried.

He expressed the readiness of his government to partner with the CBN for the currency swap, informing the CBN team that the state is sacrificing a lot to maintain peace and calm frayed nerves.

“The new notes are not available. Even as a State Governor, I don’t have the new notes. You can see how hard it is for our people to access the new currency if their Governor is not getting them. We should not overstretch the cooperation we are enjoying from the citizenry. We are expected as elected and appointed leaders to respond to the needs and aspirations of our people “, Governor Adeleke admonished.

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