Naira scarcity: CBN boss gives reasons for prevailing cash crunch

Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Governor Yemi Cardoso, has said that the prevailing cash scarcity is as a result of the poor implementation of the naira redesign policy.

The CBN boss acknowledged the “glaring defects” in various CBN policies and announced a comprehensive review initiative.

“We are taking a thorough look at all our policies implemented over time,” he said.

Cardoso spoke at the launch of the World Bank Nigeria Development Update in Abuja on Wednesday.

He said the policy review aims to produce an elegant document which would outline clear rules and procedures for navigating the Nigerian money market.

Cardoso, while speaking on the cash crunch plaguing Nigerians, identified the poorly executed naira redesign as the primary culprit.

“The apprehension surrounding the policy’s end date, well before the third quarter, triggered widespread hoarding. Many feared the old notes would lose legal tender status, prompting them to hold onto their cash.

“Unfortunately, the history of that lies with the naira redesign policy and coming to the end of the year, way before the third quarter, there was a lot of apprehension with respect to where this was all going to end; and whether the old currency would no longer be good for legal tender and many started hoardings.

“This is really what happened. Happily, the Supreme Court has decided that the currency will be valid post-end of the year,” he said.