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Did CBN fail the assignment of redesigning naira notes? [Editor's Opinion]

This article is making a case for collaboration between government and Nigerian creatives...

The Central Bank of Nigeria under the leadership of Godwin Emefiele is ready to clampdown on anyone who abuses the Naira notes. (News360)
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President Muhammadu Buhari unveiled the newly redesigned N200, N500 and N1,000 banknotes at the presidential villa today, November 23, 2022.

How Nigerians are reacting to the new naira notes: Many have expressed a fall in expectation, as the new naira notes maintain the same design but different colours from the old notes.

The major critique chasing the unveiling of the new naira note is the lack of creative juice, despite billions that could have been possibly spent on creating the notes.

This article is basically putting out the argument for collaboration between the Nigerian government and Nigerian creatives.

(look out for the practical solution ideas... they are imaginary and hypothetical)

  • Nigeria needs creative solutions— Many issues Nigeria has still not cracked may not be solvable by hiring more policy gurus. The risky, radically different thinking might be aided by the infusion of brains and hands that work outside of the government and administration bounds. What’s more, federal retrenchment has resulted in reduced support for local governments, so with limited resources, it’s time to start thinking of new approaches. Artists can help reflect, act, and create differently, sensitively, and more collaboratively. 

Practical solution: For instance CBN could have engaged creatives not only to execute but to generate ideas.

  • People-government relationship healing— After decades of civil rights infractions, power-people oppression dynamics, predatory lending, uneven urban design, environmental classism and police brutality, trust between many communities and government is understandably fractured. These relationships will not heal overnight. With their expertise in catalyzing creative and honest communication, artists and culture bearers are key players in this process of civic repair.

Practical solutions: Imagine if CBN picked creatives from each state to have a creative camp that would produce the new designed notes.

  1. Ideas... Inclusive ideas— Everyone knows it, creatives think outside the box. What makes a place tick? What are we overlooking? Too often in the history books and takes, women pushed to the background. How can we look at our nation, that we refer to as 'she', and not have a currency that represents femininity?

What if CBN partnered with creatives... this would have been a possible outcome...

Basically, CBN was not looking to give you beauty or anything different. The main goal of this exercise was to curb the hoarding and circulation of naira... thereby helping to reduce inflation.

CBN did not fail their assignment.

However, they failed Nigerians by taking away at least one reason to be instantly gratified or excited by the change.

Pulse Editor's Opinion is the viewpoint of an Editor at Pulse. It does not represent the opinion of the organisation, Pulse.

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