Despite the assurances by the apex bank last week on the continued use of both the old and new naira notes for transactions, the cash scarcity in Lagos metropolis became more pronounced yesterday as customers were limited to N10,000 over the counter cash withdrawals whilst some banks were totally out of cash.
Based on the cashless policy of the Central Bank of Nigeria, individual customers can make withdrawal of a maximum of N500,000 per week with a limit of N100,000 in a day, while corporates were limited to N5 million weekly cash withdrawals.
However, customers were limited to N10,000 in banks visited.
Some of the tier one bank branches visited had no cash available as they said they were waiting for cash while those that had rationed the available cash to N10,000 per customer irrespective of whether the account was individual or corporate.
A POS agent who spoke with LEADERSHIP, Johnson Okanlawon, said he had not been able to source enough cash to give to his customers.
Okanlawon said he was unable to get cash from his regular sources, traders from the North who usually bring goods to Lagos.
The Hausa traders who I always get cash from said they cannot give out the cash with them as the people they transact with in the North are requesting cash as against the bank transfers which they usually do before now. They told me that they now have to carry cash back to the North to pay for their wares and even with that they do not have enough cash to pay for their wares.
“They are also looking for cash the same way I am also looking for cash. I can’t go to the banks to get cash because they don’t even have. Some of my customers come to me because they can’t get cash from the ATM or from banking halls,” he said.
Before now, some banks had limited cash withdrawals from ATMs to N20,000 per day, a move they said was put in place to curb the rising cases of funds withdrawn with stolen cards. However, most ATMs visited were either out of cash or out of service.