In a bid to get rid of dirty Naira notes in the public domain, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved a disbursement of new lower denominations to economic agents.
The lower denominations disbursed include -N200, N100, N50, N20, N10 and N5.
The move is to steer up the Federal Government’s campaign to rid the country of dirty notes, make lower denominations available and stem the tide of racketeering in new notes.
To effect the guard against possible abuse or diversion of the naira notes, and curtail the scarcity of the lower Naira denominations due to hoarding and sale by unscrupulous people, the Director, Currency Operations Department, Priscilla Eleje said traders at Tejuosho Ultra-modern Market, in Lagos where the money was disbursed, would be entitled to N5000 worth of the lower denominations weekly, which would be done through their bank accounts.
This development, according to Eleje, is a response to the inadequate circulation of the lower denomination banknotes and difficulties encountered by economic agents despite huge volume of banknotes injected into circulation on yearly basis.
Commenting on the Naira notes disbursement, the Branch Controller, CBN Lagos, James Iyari enjoined the traders not to continue to recycle dirty or mutilated Naira notes, but return such to their banks.
Iyari also reminded traders that it is a criminal offence to abuse the Naira, which is punishable under the CBN Act 2007, by six months imprisonment or a fine of N50,000 or both, when convicted of the sale, spraying or mutilating the banknotes.
Recall that during a sensitization programme for market men and women in Ondo State, the CBN warned against poor handling of Naira notes. The CBN maintained that the law guiding the Naira notes was still effective and violation of the laws would attract jail terms.