Naira redesign: UBA, Access Bank, others adjust official working hours

As part of an effort to help the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) mop up Naira notes from the economy, and also help Nigerians meet the January 31, 2023 deadline for old Naira notes in circulation, some commercial banks have announced changes in hours of operation to accommodate more depositors.

In a separate email to their customers and on social media posts, the banks revealed that the decision is to help customers beat the deadline of January 31 set by the CBN.

Access bank, in a notification titled we are open on Saturday, said: “In order to beat the new Naira notes deadline of January 31, 2022, our branches will be open for longer hours during the week for your convenience, and they will also be open on Saturdays, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm for cash deposits only”.

Other banks have also shared similar messages with their customers. Governor of the CBN, Godwin Emefiele had on October 26, announced a redesign of the currency in the variation of N200, N500 and N1,000.

Emefiele had said there was significant hoarding of naira notes by members of the public, with statistics showing that over 80 per cent of the currency in circulation was outside the vaults of the commercial banks.

He said as of September 2022, a total of N3.2 trillion was in circulation, of which N2.73 trillion was outside the vaults of the banks, describing the development as unacceptable.

Emefiele explained that the new and existing notes would remain legal tender and circulate together until January 31, 2023, when the existing currencies shall cease to be legal tender.