President Muhammadu Buhari says efforts are ongoing to ensure improved distribution of the new naira notes.
In a statement on Saturday by Garba Shehu, presidential spokesperson, the president said the decision to redesign the naira was to address hoarding of illicit funds.
While acknowledging reports of long queues at banks, Buhari said the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is working on initiatives to “prevent chaos” over the distribution of the new notes.
“President Muhammadu Buhari, Saturday assured that government will ensure that citizens are unharmed in their businesses and no disruption is caused to the entire supply chain arising from the currency swap due to end shortly,” the statement reads.
“Reacting to reports of long queues of people waiting for hours for their turn to deposit old notes and get new ones, triggering public anger and opposition’s criticism, President Buhari reiterated that the currency changes were aimed at people hoarding illicit funds and not the common man, and that it had become necessary to prevent counterfeits, corruption, and terrorist funding.
“This, he assured, will stabilize and strengthen the economy. “While taking note that the poorest section of society is facing hardship as they often keep hard cash at home for various expenses, President Buhari gave strong assurances that the government will not leave them to their own fate.
“He reiterated that a number of initiatives by the Central Bank and all commercial banks are underway to speed up distribution of the new notes and do all that is necessary to forestall cash squeeze and chaos.”