The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), under the leadership of Godwin Emefiele has said it will soon phase out the circulation of the lower denominations of the naira.
Aminu Bizi, CBN consultant on e-naira made this known on Friday May 20, 2022 at an e-naira sensitisation exercise in Asaba Delta state.
According to her, the lower denomination naira note that will be phased out soon include; the N5, N10, and N20 notes, stressing that the notes have been weakened by the declining purchasing power of the naira.
“So very soon, you may not be seeing N5, N10 or N20 notes in circulation because CBN is using money to print these notes, and at the end of the day this N5, N10, N20 will be abused,” Mr Bizi said.
Further making a case for the wide adoption of e-naira, Mr Bizi disclosed that the apex bank was losing money replacing mutilated notes abused by market women and traders, and other members of the public.
Mr Bizi suggested that the e-naira platform will be made available for transactions as low as N50.
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“You have your e-NAIRA, before you even get down, you scan the Keke scanner bar code and you pay him his fare of N50 or N100. So why should you go and queue to withdraw money? Is it not for you to spend? So if these market people accept e-NAIRA, people don’t need to cash,” he asked.
The CBN stated this as part of its e-naira initiative, which aims to promote financial inclusion and a cashless economy.
Mr Bizi said that traders in onions, sachet water, pepper, and other commodities would be taught how to utilise the e-naira account to conduct transactions at a sensitisation exercise held on Friday at Asaba’s famed Ogbogonogo Market.
With smaller denominations constantly losing their value due to the naira’s diminishing purchasing power, the CBN claims it is squandering money by issuing the notes, which are then abused by the populace.
On October 25 2021, the eNaira, went live after an official launch by President Muhammadu Buhari. Buhari had launched the eNaira at the State House in Nigeria’s capital after a previous plan to unveil the digital currency on October 1 was postponed.
Available statistics has shown that Nigeria is one of the five countries in the world to develop an official digital currency. 14 other countries are at the pilot stages of launching theirs, according to the Atlantic Council’s CBDC tracker.
Nigeria has so far launched two mobile applications which are the eNaira speed wallet and eNaira merchant wallet on Google playstore and Apple store for the usage of digital currency.
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