The scarcity of the redesigned naira notes intensified over the week, frustrating many Nigerians as they scrambled to withdraw new naira notes. Most Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) are slow and the queues intensify across the country. There is so much chaos across the country, fighting erupting in certain areas, and most banks like Zenith bank are being vandalized by angry individuals who are willing to use any means necessary to take their money from the bank.
On the other hand, Point-Of-Sales operators have used this situation to skyrocket their charges on cash transactions and set unreasonable limits on cash withdrawals for their own selfish interests. Most POS operators are charging about 10 percent for each transaction and giving a withdrawal maximum limit of N5,000. Most Nigerians are saying that Nigeria needs a new evolution because the hardship is unbearable.
RateCaptain conducted a survey to determine the cost of withdrawing in Lagos to determine how much people are charged to withdraw cash from POS machines.
Ola Tolu, a Lagos-based mother of three, told RateCaptain that the scarcity of naira has made it challenging for her to buy foodstuffs from local markets. “The market women who sell food ingredients for preparing soup and stew, request only cash because they are not used to mobile banking or transfers,” she said. She said she now spends more due to the extra charges from POS operators. “I was charged N800 on Wednesday to withdraw N5,000 from a POS operator in my area.”
Raphael Idu, a trader, said people at POS operators in his area are exploiting the scarcity of the new notes. “The POS operators in the Ajabadi area of Lagos are charging 500 for 2000 cash withdrawals, and they are setting the maximum cash withdrawal limit at N2,000,” he said.
POS operators are saying that they are also facing crises in the collection of cash as most banks are allowing a `maximum of N5,000 for all cash withdrawals,” not the N20,000 directed by the CBN.
Modupe Akin a POS operator, told ratecaptain that it is not easy for her to get cash for her business, which is why she is charging so much. “This is a difficult situation; there is no cash anywhere. “I have to pay extra money to get the little cash I get in order to stay in business,” she said.
Obinna Ekpe said he continues to charge high until the situation is resolved. “I will charge high prices until cash is available; banks are hiding the money and nobody is complaining,” he said.
There have been many comments on Twitter about the current cash situation in Nigeria.
Salisu A. Ibrahim tweeted, “This is very sad. I just went around and couldn’t find any cash in any banks or ATMs. I had to pay N600 to get N4,000 from a POS agent, and it was even the old notes.”
Hamman Usman tweeted, “In Abuja, many banks are not operating ATM centers or paying at the counter, Most ATMs are empty except for very few banks such as Jaiz Bank, Wema Bank, and Stanbic IBTC, but others like Zenith, UBA, and others are empty.”
“Heritage Bank at Mile 1 Port Harcourt programmed their ATM machine to dispense only one note, and it’s loaded with one thousand naira notes, so to withdraw ten thousand naira from the ATM, one has to punch ten times and be charged thirty-five naira for each,” tweeted Boma Opusunju.
Haleemah Toafique tweeted, “Access Bank ATM in Kola Alagbado, is dispensing N1,000 per transaction, and to withdraw N5,000, you have to do five transactions.”
The situation has worsened, with many protests going on in different parts of Nigeria due to the current situation in the country. The government should contact the right authorities to manage the situation.
Leave a Reply