By Hannah Nathan, Warri
The Central Bank of Nigeria has alerted Nigerians about the dangers of fake Naira banknotes amid the country’s currency scarcity.
The alert was issued by the top bank on Friday under the heading “Beware of Counterfeit Naira Banknotes in Circulation.”
The public, Bureau de Change, Financial Houses, Deposit Money Banks, and the general public were all asked by the Bank to exercise more vigilance and adopt all appropriate safety measures.
It guarantees that it is assisting law enforcement officials in capturing offenders.
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has been made aware of the circulation of counterfeit banknotes, particularly higher denominations, by some persons for use in food markets and other commercial establishments located in the nation’s major cities.
“For the avoidance of doubt, Section 20(4) of the CBN Act (2007) as amended, states that: “It shall be an offence punishable by a term of imprisonment of not less than 5 years for any person to falsify, make or counterfeit any bank note or coin issued by the Bank which is legal tender in Nigeria.”
“The CBN is in constant collaboration with relevant security and financial agencies to confiscate fake Naira banknotes, arrest and prosecute counterfeiters. Members of the public are also encouraged to report anyone suspected of having counterfeit naira notes to the nearest police station, or branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
“Meanwhile, all Deposit Money Banks, Financial Houses and Bureau de Change and the general public are enjoined to be more vigilant and take all necessary precautionary measures to curtail the acceptance and distribution of counterfeit notes,” the statement reads.
It was reported that the threat of naira scarcity worsened in parts of Abuja as Automated Teller Machines failed to dispense cash in the Nation’s capital.