Naira rebranding crisis spreading as Buhari asks for more time

There has been one reported death of a Nigerian in connection with an ATM card, students of the University of Benin clashed with armed soldiers on an ATM queue and protests have erupted across the country but President Muhammadu Buhari’s response is to ask for another seven days to resolve the Naira replacement crisis engulfing the nation.

At a meeting, Friday, with governors of the ruling APC Buhari urged Nigerians to give him seven days to resolve the crisis over the unavailability of cash that has engulfed the country following the policy of the Central Bank to replace three high value Naira notes.

He said he had seen television reports about cash shortages and hardship to local businesses and ordinary people and gave assurances that the balance of seven of the 10-day extension will be used to crackdown on whatever stood in the way of successful implementation.

The president said when he was asked to approve the policy, he had demanded an undertaking from the CBN that no new notes will be printed in a foreign country and they in turn gave him assurances that there was enough capacity, manpower and equipment to print the currency for local needs.

He did not say if he had been lied to but asked to be given time to go back to find out what was actually happening.

“I will revert to the CBN and the Minting Company. There will be a decision one way or the other in the remaining seven days of the 10-day extension,” the president assured in a statement by the presidency.

President Buhari told the governors that, being closer to the people, he had heard their cries and will act in a way that there will be a solution.

In Agbor, Ika local government area of Delta state, a middle-aged man died on Thursday after failing to get his ATM card from a bank branch.

On Friday, the Vice Chancellor of the University of Benin said there had been an “unfortunate incident of the clash between some students of our university and soldiers on Thursday 2nd February, resulting from alleged resistance of students to the soldiers’ attempt to jump ATM queue on campus has been brought under control and the management of the university is in discussions with the hierarchy of the S&T for amicable resolution.

The management acknowledges that these are challenging times for everyone and enjoins all to remain calm while efforts are being made to avert a re-occurrence.”

In Oyo state , youths and other residents protesting hardship in the country on Friday attacked the governor’s office in Agodi area of Ibadan.

Read also: New naira notes: Scarce in banks, abundant at parties

The youths in large numbers stormed the streets of Ibadan to protest the current state of the nation.

Dissatisfied with the situation, the youths, armed with several placards, stormed the Iwo Road area of the state on Friday morning to register their grievances.

However, some protesters marched to the Oyo State Secretariat, Agodi Ibadan, and attempted to force their way into the Governor’s office.

The protesters were said to have been repelled by security operatives attached to the governor’s office.

Reports said the protesters threw stones and other dangerous weapons into the governor’s office.

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