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Naira redesign: Banks warn customers against last-minute rush

Naira stays at N755/$ on low demand

As the deadline for depositing old notes into the banking system approaches, Nigerian banks have encouraged their customers to bring their money, to avoid a last-minute rush.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had given January 31, 2023, as the deadline for the exchange of old naira notes.

Ecobank Nigeria on Monday called on its customers to approach any of its branches to deposit old naira banknotes into their accounts to avoid a last-minute rush, also assuring them of gaining a minimum of eight percent interest on their savings.

In a message to customers, the bank noted that measures are in place in all its branches to ensure seamless, easy and stress-free cash deposits by customers, adding that the bank’s branches are now open for business on Saturdays to accept deposits from customers.

Responding to media questions in Lagos, David Isiavwe, group head, of operations and technology, said there are no charges on cash deposits at any Ecobank branch, no matter the volume. He assured customers of prompt services any day of the week and on Saturdays when the branches are also open to receiving cash.

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“We wish to inform our customers not to wait for rush hour to bring their cash to the bank. They should visit any of our branches closest to them to deposit their cash in their account. We have extended our working days to Saturday to enable customers deposit cash. Though we are impressed with the present turn out of customers, there is still the need for others to comply. We don’t want any of our customers to miss the CBN’s deadline.”

The Federal Government through the CBN, on December 15, 2022 introduced new 200, 500 and 1000 banknotes into the nation’s financial system.

The CBN said the naira redesign policy was to control currency in circulation, address the hoarding of the banknotes outside the banking system and also address shortage of clean and fit banknotes in circulation. The apex bank stated that the old banknotes would cease to be legal tender in the country from January 31, 2023.

Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) have been calling on their customers to bring their old notes.

“Have you been busy all week long and can’t visit any of our branches? Don’t worry, come in this Saturday from 10 am – 1 pm and get a debit card while you deposit your old naira notes; there will be no charges for cash returned/paid into your accounts,” First Bank of Nigeria said.

Fidelity Bank plc has temporarily extended its operating hours to 6.00pm after the central bank announced.the unveiling of the new naira notes before the earlier scheduled time.