Bayelsa State Government has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to make the new banknotes available to commercial banks in the state to mitigate the sufferings of the people.
State Deputy Governor, Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo, who made the call at a meeting with Bank Managers and Service Commanders in Yenagoa, expressed concern over difficulties experienced by the people following scarcity of the new notes.
Senator Ewhrudjakpo said the meeting was convened in response to security concerns resulting from the CBN naira swap policy and attendant hardship faced by the public to get the new naira notes for their daily transactional needs.
He urged residents to be law-abiding assuring that government would take measures to prevent any breach of the existing peace in the state.
Briefing the press, Police Commissioner, Ben Okolo, said the meeting was about taking stock of various measures and efforts made by government and banks to ensure peace and reduce the suffering of the people.
Mr. Okolo assured that the State Police Command had beefed up security around commercial banks and CBN in Yenagoa following a communiqué reportedly issued by a group of people threatening attack over scarcity of the new notes.
Contributing, representatives of various commercial banks in Yenagoa, said their institutions shut down operations temporarily upon receipt of the said communiqué to avoid loss of lives and property
They lamented that the cash crunch witnessed was due to constraints from the Central Bank of Nigeria, alleging that the scarcity is exacerbated by owners of major businesses like petrol filling stations, supermarkets and wholesalers who sell notes to Point of Sale (POS) operators. While calling for information management, they debunked rumour that the CBN is supplying thirty million naira daily to commercial banks in Yenagoa.