• Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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Commuters stranded as protesters shut Lagos-Abeokuta road over naira, scarcity

Commuters stranded as protesters shut Lagos-Abeokuta road over naira, scarcity

Commuters and motorists were on Tuesday stranded on the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway, as protesters blocked the road to vent their frustration and anger over the continued scarcity of petrol and naira notes in the country.

The protesters made bonfires of disused tyres on both sides of the highway, causing traffic gridlock, forcing travellers to spend hours on the road.

Some of the protesters said the current cash crunch has thrown them into hardship and agonising moments.

Kazeem Sanni, leader of the protesters, described the situation where bank customers could not access their money as unfortunate.

According to him, it is even double jeopardy for customers as the banks would neither load their ATMs with money nor allow depositors into the banking halls to make withdrawals.

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Recall that Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had directed money deposit banks to load their ATMs with cash and to also allow depositors to withdraw a maximum of N20,000 across the counter.

“The situation is really pathetic as this has grounded and paralysed business activities.

“We decided to demonstrate to show our grievances as we can no longer bear this hardship,’’ Sanni said.

He called on the CBN to urgently print more new notes and ensure that banks complied with its directives.

A protester, Rotimi Odubanjo, noted that the inability to withdraw money from banks had inflicted untold discomfort on the people.

“We need the Federal Government to come to our assistance and ease this cash and fuel scarcity,’’ he said.

He said the twin-scarcity of fuel and money had crippled economic activities and was leading to hunger.

Police, military and paramilitary personnel were seen at the scene of the protest calming the protesters.