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Cash scarcity worsens in Bauchi, as CBN intensifies monitoring of banks

Residents of Bauchi have continued to lament over the scarcity of the new Naira notes as they were unable to get cash from counters in banks, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs), and Point of Sales (POS) in the state.

Customers waiting to withdraw cash at ATMs UBA Wunti Market  Bauchi.

Malam Sani Saidu, a resident, who was in UBA to withdraw cash, said in spite of the extension of the deadline by the CBN on Sunday, the scarcity of the new notes had worsened.

“We are stranded for not accessing cash at the POS, ATM and the Banks since it was allowed for customers to get cash over the counter.

“See how customers are struggling on que and the money is not available and transfer doesn’t work effectively,” he said.

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He said buyers and sellers in the local markets were stranded as some of them were still finding it difficult to agree on cash transfers.

Miss Monica Anthony, a UBA Bank Road customer, who visited banking halls for withdrawals, said she was turned back as they were told that only deposits were accepted.

“They told me that they don’t have new naira notes, we were asked to go to an ATM outside and there is a long queue.

“I am calling on CBN and the commercial banks to resolve the matter and make the new naira notes available for people.

“How can they claim they don’t have new notes despite claims by CBN that there are enough new notes in circulation,” she said.

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Another resident, Mr Martins Ayuba, said the situation was frustrating because “you can’t access the money you kept in the bank”.

“People need cash to do so many things. CBN and the other banks had mopped up the bulk of the old naira notes and had refused to make the new notes circulate,” he said.

At Access Bank, on Bank Road, a customer Hamisu Abdulmalik, said he was in the bank but could not withdraw at the counter.

“I was told to go to the ATM but I could not stand the queue.

“I visited at least 3 to 4 POS centres but could not get money because they also don’t have either old or new naira notes with them,” he said.

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Responding to the scarcity of the new notes, Dr. Elizabeth Kwaghe, Deputy Director, Currency Operations of the CBN, said the apex bank had supplied banks with the new currency and directed them to disburse to their customers.

Kwaghe, who led the Taskforce Team that monitored commercial banks, said the team intensified efforts to see that money circulated adequately.

“We also advised the banks to desist from keeping the cash away from the public or face the stiffer sanction.

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