The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is fighting a further decline in the value of the naira and faces another problem: the misuse of naira banknotes. According to CBN’s Aladeen Badajo, the central bank is concerned with the rate at which Nigerians “mutilate, deface, depress, and even sprinkle and sell” naira notes. He adds that because of this abuse, Nigeria is now spending more money on banknote reprinting than it should.
The perpetrators are now facing possible jail time, according to a report quoting Badajo, an assistant director of CBN’s monetary department. Badajo stated:
Misuse of the currency will result in a penalty of no less than six months or a fine of no less than US $ 120 (N50,000), or both.
The deputy director adds that instead of damaging the banknotes, “people” [should] regard Nigeria’s currency as a symbol of national identity. “
Meanwhile, Bitcoin.com News reached out to Nathanial Luz, a Nigerian “cryptocurrency thought leader,” to understand why his compatriots continue to abuse the banknotes despite the CBN’s pleas and threats. According to Luz, Nigerians see the spraying of banknotes as a kind of celebration and the CBN is aware of this but has not been able to enforce a ban. Luz told Bitcoin.com News:
Nigerians even buy new banknotes at a 70% markup just to spray the banknotes. So I was able to buy $ 10,000 worth of naira bills for between $ 15,000 and $ 17,000 just to spray the money around.
Nonetheless, Luz is certain that this practice has little to do with the ongoing devaluation of the naira.
Do you think the CBN’s renewed threats will end the Nigerian practice of banknote spraying? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.
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