Three feared killed as Edo residents protest naira scarcity


Protest broke out in Benin, Edo state capital, on Wednesday, over the paucity of naira notes.


Some residents protested in Oluku, Upper Sakponba, and New Benin market.


A group of protesters also converged at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) office located at Akpakpava road, Ring Road axis, and blocked the road leading to the bank.


Security operatives at the CBN office were said to have shot tear gas canisters at the protesters to disperse them, resulting in violence.


At the New Benin market, traders barricaded the major road, chanting protest songs to make known their opposition to the naira redesign policy.


A resident of the state disclosed that many shops at the New Benin market are currently closed owing to the protest.


At Upper Sakponba, the protesters blocked the major road in the area while creating bonfires with tyres.


Some protesters were said to have been killed after security operatives were mobilised to disperse the demonstrations, but Chidi Nwabuzor, Edo police spokesperson, told TheCable that senior officers are on the field to get information on the incidents.


“Regarding the question you made if there was any death… I won’t want to feed you with information that is not fact. I would rather wait for senior officers who are currently in the field querying this riot and protecting the lives and property of the citizen to return so I will have first-class information,” he said.




For days, Nigerians have been battling with the scarcity of naira notes — a development that has led to long queues at banking halls, and automated teller machines (ATM).


The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had given a deadline of January 31 for the use of old naira notes but it was extended to February 10.


On February 8, the supreme court temporarily restrained the federal government from banning the use of the old naira notes from February 10, 2023, pending the hearing of the matter on February 15.


Despite the court’s order, Emefiele insisted on the deadline.


On Wednesday, the apex court adjourned the hearing of the case brought against the CBN on the policy to Wednesday, February 22.


The stance of the CBN has triggered confusion as filling stations, supermarkets, and other business owners have continued to reject the old naira notes.

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