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Banks put people in trouble for refusing to accept old naira notes

Commercial banks in Nigeria continue to evict depositors of old 1,000, 500, and 200 naira notes.

Apparently, the problem has become worse in parts of Nigeria such as Gusau, the capital of Zamfara state, and many other areas.

On Monday, the BBC talked to some residents of Gusau, where the people said they lost their jobs after they took money to the bank and it was refused.

Not accepting old money has put people in trouble

‘I’ll sleep hungry even though I’m running out of money’

A student who is a tailor, Umar Musa said that she must make him sleep hungry, despite the thousands of naira in his pocket.

He is also afraid that he may lose the opportunity to write the test in school.

He said, “Now that I’m talking like this, I don’t have the money to go to school. I have old money in my pocket but I don’t know how to spend it.”

He added that even those selling food, such as tea and pasta for children, did not come out.

‘I even filled out the deposit form and was told that the elderly are not wanted’

Some of the residents of Gusau also said that they have spent thousands of naira among banks but could not find a single bank that accepted their savings.

A man told the BBC that he had to fill out a bank payment slip and was told to include it with his pocket money and go back.

He said, “People have been walking on the street to answer (the old bills) but they said that they will not be answered.”

He stated that he visited four banks but nowhere was the old money he took with him accepted.

He said that now there is a shortage of new bills, and banks have said that they will not accept old ones.

“I am selling rice. I woke up today with about 100,000 naira, but during the day I was going with them.”

He said he also went to the gas station to drink in the vehicle but was told that old money would not be accepted.

‘They said they heard from the Central Bank of Nigeria’

The people who spoke to the BBC said that the information that the banks give them is that they have to hear from the Central Bank of Nigeria, before they continue to accept the old bills.

It is not only Zamfara state that is suffering from this kind of problem because reports from other states show that similar problems are being faced in banks and other business owners.

The problem comes despite an interim order by the Supreme Court of Nigeria, which stopped the Central Bank and the country’s government from implementing their intention to stop accepting the old naira notes as legal tender.

And President Muhammadu Buhari’s assurance that things will improve within 10 days.

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