Nigeria News take a look at the high volume of N100 notes in circulation and its effect on trade. The high volume of dirty N100 notes in circulation is becoming worrisome. Besides the fact that it has affected small scale business transaction, it has become a bad symbol to immortalize one of the country’s nationalists, Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
The dirty notes in circulation is a great disservice for young children who are learning history of the three great Nigerians, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Sir Ahmadu Bello and Chief Obafemi Awolowo whose pictures were put on the N500, N200 and N100 notes respectively.
In the last few months, torn and wrinkled N100 notes fly around in banks, market place and inside commercial buses. The image of the first Premier of the defunct Western Region, Chief Obafemi Awolowo is no more visible on the note.
Though the N100 note represents a means of exchange for goods and services but lacks the basic durability of money. Traders reject it at will. Bus conductors throw it back to commuters; petrol station attendants refuse to take it.
At home, children do not take it anymore from their parents while wives do not commend their husbands for bringing such note home.
Our correspondent was in Ibadan, Oyo State on Thursday when an alms beggar came to him for assistance. The boy was given a N100 note.
Surprisingly, the beggar looked intently at the note, which of course was rough and refused to say thank you to the giver.
There is suspicion everywhere that fake N100 notes are in circulation and perhaps that was why the Central Bank of Nigeria changed its colour of the note about a year ago.
However both colours are in circulation at present, dirty, rough and stinking. The Central Bank has not provided a tenable argument on why it has refused to wipe out this note from circulation.
During his tenure as the Governor of CBN, Professor Chukwuma Soludo changed the stuff of N20 and N50 notes to polyester and till date, the two notes have remained durable.
But the new challenge is that hardly can one find a N20 or N50 goods in the market today. Most of the cheapest commodities are sold between N50 and N100 due to high inflation rate.
In churches and mosques, ushers find it difficult to reject N100 notes as worshippers now keep the note till Fridays and Sundays for “God” as offerings and tithes.
Obviously, Awolowo cannot be happy in his grave. The image of man whose impeccable record and immense contribution to regional and national development is being soiled on N100 note.
Perhaps that is why the Lagos State Government has decided to re-immortalize Awo, whose face is fading away on the N100 note.
The State Governor said that a new statue of the late sage would be unveiled at the Junction of Lateef Jakande Road, Agidingbi, Alausa Ikeja on Tuesday.
Possibly, the new iconic bust, standing at 20 feet would refresh the memory of Awolowo’s legacies of free education, the most effective civil service system in the whole of West Africa and trade and industry in the old Western state.