Naira Scarcity: President Buhari extends use of old notes.

In a bid to calm tensions over a lack of cash in Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari has announced that the old 200 naira ($0.43; £0.36) notes will remain legal tender for another 60 days.

In recent days there have been violent protests as people struggled to get hold of newly designed banknotes.

The deadline to hand in old cash was supposed to have been last Friday.

But not enough new notes have been released, leaving many without cash to pay for vital items.

While Nigerians now have until 10 April to use the old 200 naira notes, Mr Buhari said that the old 500 and 1,000 naira notes could only be exchanged at the central bank and other designated places.

READ MORE: Protesters storm CBN in Ondo to exchange old notes

Nigerians have faced long queues at cash machines, with some sleeping outside banks to try and be first in line to get some money.

People say they have been forced to skip meals and have been unable to pay for basic services like bus or taxi fares in a country where cash is still widely used. An estimated 40% of the population do not have access to bank accounts.

With elections due on 25 February, President Muhammadu Buhari has been facing calls to take action to avoid losing votes for the ruling All Progressives Congress.


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