Godwin AJOM, Calabar
Following persisting queues at banking halls, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) and the difficulties customers encounter in the course of Mobile Transfers and other cashless financial transactions in Cross River, the Bankers Committee and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have taken to the streets of Calabar to sensitize and encourage Nigerians on the need to go cashless.
This is coming even as traders in the state have lamented that they have continued to suffer and their businesses suffering as a result of the persisting cash crunch.
Speaking in an interview, the Assistant Director, Payment System of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Chika Ugwueze has said that the people should learn to make use of alternative electronic payment platforms as alternatives for cash usage in Nigeria.
“The CBN initiated the e-naira platform, as an alternative to cash. It is the digital form of the cash that is in your wallet. Every Nigerian is advised to download and use the e-naira wallet as an alternative to cash.
“Though the e-naira is not an alternative to your bank account, but it is only an alternative to the cash in your wallet that offers improved security and efficiency,”
Also, Mr Thomas, Relationship Manager, Zenith Bank, Calabar said, “the move is to make the people see reasons why we must go cashless. Yes, no doubt the past few months people have been suffering but absence of cash is not the end of the road. Let’s utilise other avenues and still get going.
The committee explained that their targeted audience include everyone but particularly the market people and the aged, who really may be suffering more from the cashless policy.
Some business owners and traders lamented the challenges they face but hoped that the alternative electronic ideas would ease the stress currently experienced.
Madam Tina Oko, a market woman explained that, ” it has not been easy with us. We are passing through hard times. Like now if I want to go and eat how will I pay since I don’t have cash? When I go to the bank, the queues are very long, so I am saying that, let to the government allow business people to access their money.”
However, some of the business people expressed confidence in the cashless Policy, but argued that it will not stop corruption.