The News Agency of Nigeria reports that inhabitants of Kaduna State are seeking help from petrol stations as they struggle to find cash to meet their pressing needs. The shortage of liquid cash in Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) in most banks in the city has forced people to turn to petrol stations, as Point of Sales (PoS) operators have also shut down their services for the same reason.
According to NAN’s findings, people who are looking for cash are flocking to petrol stations where fuel is being bought with cash instead of electronic transfer. They are reaching an agreement with those who require fuel, who pay for the petrol through electronic transfer and then receive the cash from the fuel buyer in return.
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Interviews with people at one of the petrol stations revealed that this arrangement was a relief for many people who had been experiencing severe hardships. Some people noted that the major challenge was that electronic transfer could not be used for everything. There are certain necessities that can only be paid for with liquid cash.
The scarcity of cash is also having an impact on hospitals in Kaduna, with some clinics reporting low patient turnout. Employees of the hospitals say that the shortage of new naira notes is the reason for this decline. Patients are also struggling to settle their transportation fares to the hospital due to a lack of cash.
In the meantime, tricycle operators in the Kaduna metropolis are now displaying their account details on their tricycles for customers to pay electronically. Passengers are being informed in advance that old N500 and N1,000 notes are no longer legal tender and will not be accepted.
Despite the benefits of the petrol station arrangement, some people have expressed concerns about the uncertainty of network service and the waiting time for their turn to receive fuel. Nonetheless, this system has reduced the frustration of many individuals dealing with the cash squeeze in the system.