Another round of protests have broken out in several states across the country, including Oyo, Delta, and Edo, over the scarcity of the new N200, N500, N1,000 notes and rejection of the old naira bills.
This comes less than two weeks after residents of Ibadan, Oyo State took to the streets in protest against the hardship triggered by the naira notes swap and fuel price hike.
Violent demonstrations played out on Wednesday in Ibadan and Udu, near Warri, the commercial hub of Delta State.
The protests were in reaction to banks nationwide refusing the old currency in line with a position taken by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), although the Supreme Court had ruled that the apex bank’s February 10 deadline be suspended temporarily.
The position has since led to a standoff between the CBN and the governors of various states, including Kano, Ogun and Ondo, who challenged the apex bank and/or the banks in their respective states that continue to reject the old currency.
There were demonstrations in different parts of Ibadan, such as Mokola, resulting in a gridlock along Eleyele/Eruwa road.
Cars were turned back at some point while some schoolchildren were forced to return home as a result of the protest.
Commercial activities were grounded as the Mokola Road was turned into a football field.
Most major roads were deserted as many residents resorted to trekking long distances.
In Delta, the ongoing rampage blocked the major highway with bonfires and other objects at their disposal, destroying automated teller machines (ATMs) belonging to some banks in the area.
Angry youths protested the scarcity of the new redesigned naira notes and the rejection of the old notes by people.
The demonstrations first broke out at Orhuwhorun junction before spreading to the expressway.
Part of the buildings of banks were vandalised by the mob who hurled stones and other objects at the premises, priompting bank workers and their customers to scamper for safety.
Meanwhile, the Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa has appealed for calm and patience.
Okowa’s appeal was contained in a statement by the state Commissioner for Information, Charles Aniagwu.
He called on the people to remain calm while also appealing to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the monetary authorities to take further steps in increasing the money supply in the system.
Chaos broke out across various banks on Akpakpava road in Benin City, the Edo State capital, following what some eyewitnesses described as an inability to access cash at the banks.
Bonfires were started by angry residents along the road.
Some of the angry residents claimed that shootings led to the death of some persons who had visited the banks for cash withdrawals.