Sokoto Residents Adopts Another Country’s Currency Over Scarcity of New Naira Notes

Residents and traders in some communities in Sokoto State now transact with a foreign currency following the scarcity of the New Naira Notes.

According to reports, that citizens across the country have been lamenting the hardship in getting the newly redesigned naira notes following the validity deadline on the old N1000, N500 and N200 naira notes by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The apex bank had initially set the 31st of January 2023 as the deadline for the acceptance of the old currency but eventually extended to February 10 following an outcry by Nigerians and various organizations.

Despite the development, the scarcity of new naira notes still persists. Some sources, however, confirmed to journalists that some communities and markets in the Illela Local Government Area of Sokoto State have since resolved to be transacting with CFA francs.

Illela is a border town with the Niger Republic. About 105 kilometres from Sokoto, the capital city of Sokoto State.

To ease the tension brought about by the new naira swap, most of the traders and residents have reportedly resolved to trade, sell and buy in CFA franc.

Confirming the development to journalists, a resident of Sabon-Gari, a town in Illela of Local Government Area, identified as Yusuf Sani, said he had changed all his Naira notes to CFA because of the difficulty in getting New Naira Notes in the region.

“I decided to have only CFA because people are not collecting Old Naira Notes again. The ATM does not even dispense. You can only get New Naira Note from POS, which is around N200 to N300 per N1,000.

“This is why it is safe to have CFA,” Sani told reporters.

The citizen explained that it will be easier for him to spend the foreign currency because his town is close to some communities in the Niger Republic.

Another trader at the ILLELA International Cattle Market, Abu, added that while it is not unusual to see some traders using CFA in the markets, most traders now exclusively use CFA due to the non-circulation of the New Naira Notes.

“In this market, we have many people from neighbouring countries that come here to do business, particularly in cattle. So they bring foreign currency like CFA. But for the past few weeks, spending of Naira is now becoming difficult because no one is ready to collect the old Naira notes,” the citizen said.

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