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Reps tasks CBN to reinforce the use of coins as a legal tender

In an effort to make the coins strong again in Nigeria, the House of Representatives has urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to ensure commercial banks operating in the country use coins for transactions, stressing that they remain a legal tender.

The drive for the reinforcement of coins as a mega tender was pushed by Mr Muda Lawal, the lawmaker from Bachi during the plenary on Tuesday. Lawal while urging the CBN to intervene in the matter stressed that the nation spent scarce resources to mint the currency but lamented that it is not used to the fullest.

He noted that the refusal to use coins in Nigeria has significantly affected smooth financial transactions, especially Nigerians, who now bear the brunt of prices summed up to the nearest Naira equivalent.

He said “despite the huge budgetary sum that was expended by the federal government in the production of coins as part of the legal tender, the said coins seem to be extinct at the moment.”

The congressman said as a result of this, “the day to day business transactions of ordinary Nigerians have been significantly affected as the lack of coins and other lower denominations have resulted in prices being summed up to the nearest Naira equivalent, a situation that can best be described as inflation in economic terms.”

Mr Umar expressed worry “that while other countries make use of coins for their daily financial transactions, the Nigerian coins comprising 50 kobo, N1 and N2 have not been fully utilised in that regard [and] injecting low denominations and coins into the economy will go a long way in curbing price inflation and stabilizing the economy.”

He reminded the House that on February 28, 2007, as part of the economic reforms under the former Governor of the CBN, Mr Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, N50, N20, N10 and N5 banknotes were reissued with new designs as well as the coining of N1 and 50 kobo, while a new N2 coin was introduced.

The lawmaker, therefore, urged the CBN “to reinforce the use of coins as a legal tender and ensure that banks comply with the use of coins to the fullest.”

The motion which received a unanimous voice vote after leading the debate with contributions from other members.

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