Being a Nigerian living in Nigeria for the past few weeks has been as traumatic and unfavourable as anything can be.
Right from when the old naira notes became obsolete, living conditions have been unbearable even for the bravest of men. No one seems to understand why access to the new naira became a challenge. With the ATMs in banks not dispensing cash, POS operatives have raised their charges outrageously.
Yet from the look of things now, it seems there is hope. Not quite long, I heard an ATM nearby was dispensing cash. Though the queue was long and the sun was quite hot, I patiently waited for my turn. I felt a rush when I was finally able to withdraw money from the ATM that day. It seemed like such a long time.
Funny, how in a matter of weeks, an event such as the naira redesign can alter the lives of so many people. It seemed like years since I visited a bank. Gradually, banks are opening up and money is getting back into the system. POS operatives have reduced their charges, and although they are yet to return to their normal price things are looking up.
Could this be hope? Is the sudden turn of events going to be long-lasting? Or are we in for another shock? If these changes should continue, it will relieve so much stress and prevent further frustration and unrest. People will be able to carry on with their businesses and projects without fear.
But if these changes are not sustained, their implications will be even more disastrous. It will be a case of raising one’s hope, only to let it come shattering down. There is so much that one can endure. As a Nigerian, I can say that in the past few weeks, we have encountered difficulty enough to last a lifetime. The least the government and CBN can do now, is to ensure that this recent turn of events is sustained.
Nigerians deserve a little breath of fresh air. A little bit of normalcy amidst the chaos. Nothing brings stability as much as knowing that one can easily access his money whenever he chooses. Knowing that the economy of the nation is firm as a rock, one can boldly raise a family and maintain a business.
It’s a call to all organizations and persons involved. The government, CBN, and commercial banks should all put their hands together to ensure economic stability and growth for the sake of the people and posterity.