The minister states that the situation is temporary and would soon be resolved soon.

Nigerian Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, says President Muhammadu Buhari is not happy with the current scarcity of new notes the citizens of the country are facing.

The minister said this while fielding questions from State House Correspondents during the 65th edition of State House briefing on Thursday in Abuja.

Due to the scarcity of new notes, the president approved the extension of the ongoing naira swap by 10 days, moving the deadline from an intial date of January 31st to February 10.

However, citizens of the country are still struggling to get the new notes, but the minister has promised that the situation will not persist.

She said: “Of course, we are worried; we are not that happy that citizens have to queue and struggle at bank ATM to be able to get their cash but this is a temporary solution.

“Let me just give you an analogy; if you have a wound, for your to be able to heal that wound, it needs to be dressed; sometimes, when you go to the hospital, they put iodine and it is very painful but it is necessary to that to get the wound to heal.

“So, it is not easy and the president is not happy that the citizens are really suffering; but we are convinced that it is something that needs to be done this time.”

Ahmed also confirmed that commercial banks would still accept old notes from citizens even after the deadline has elapsed.

“There is still opportunity for citizens to actually take their old currency to the CBN for redemption; so it is not all over,” she said.

“But the positive side of it is that there is a lot of currency that has been mopped up by this operation and it means it has achieved a good level of success.

“The pain it has caused the citizens is regrettable but it is also very transient and the bank is continuing to address it.”


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