Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State stormed the state’s branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in Abeokuta on Monday and confronted officials about the growing hardship caused by the scarcity of new notes.
Abiodun, accompanied by the Speaker of the House of Assembly, Olakunle Oluomo, and other government officials, paid an unscheduled visit to the CBN branch in Abeokuta.
The governor also met with the Bankers Forum, which is made up of managers from the state’s commercial banks.
Abiodun directed that cash be made available to residents of the state by the state branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the management of commercial banks operating in the state.
This, according to the governor, relieves residents of the difficulties they face while waiting to withdraw money from banks.
Abiodun also offered to lead cabinet members in monitoring cash distribution to banks to ensure that no commercial bank or their agents hoard the new naira notes in the state.
According to the governor, it is disheartening to see long lines of residents at Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) waiting to cash money from the system under duress, with some not receiving enough to meet their immediate needs.
He went on to say that it was humiliating that those who were attended to were only paid two thousand naira per transaction.
Abiodun, however, urged the CBN to ensure the availability of new notes at commercial banks for people to withdraw their money.
The governor explained that he was compelled to visit the state branch of the CBN as the “landlord to find out how we can collaborate to ensure that success of the CBN policy on the new notes and currency swap”.
“I’ve met with the President and CBN governor. It is within the right of the CBN by law and as enshrined in the Constitution.
“Our people went out in their numbers but our people who deposited money and felt they would have as much money as they had deposited or need for their daily needs and welfare and wellbeing.
“We’ve had to suspend our campaigns. I met with people over the weekend who said to me that they have not eaten for days, especially, those from the informal sector.
“As a governor, whose primary function is the welfare and security of our people, I need to find out how we can interact with you to see how we can improve on the current level of distribution of the currency in order to diffuse tension”, Abiodun submitted.
Earlier in his remarks, Wahab Oseni, the state controller of the Central Bank of Nigeria, pleaded with the people to be patient.
He assured the people of the state that they will start having access to more cash as from tomorrow, Tuesday, February 7th, 2023