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Nigerians’ Meh Response to New Look Currency

Citizens have criticized the “redesigning” of the country’s local currency proposed by its central bank to rein in counterfeiting and hoarding of large sums outside the banking system. President Muhammadu Buhari unveiled the redesigned 200-, 500-, and 1,000-naira notes, saying “the new Naira banknotes have been fortified with security features that make them difficult to counterfeit.” The new notes look very similar to those currently in circulation. The design of the highest-value 1,000-naira note, which includes the national coat-of-arms and the headquarters of the Central Bank of Nigeria, is largely unchanged. The only significant difference is the color — it’s gone from a largely brown underprint to blue. The Central Bank of Nigeria says that the redesigned notes will replace notes currently in circulation by Jan. 2023. But many locals are not impressed, describing the supposedly redesigned banknotes as a mere color revamp, given their similarities to the old notes. “Snapchat filter, waste of time and resources, so a whole CBN cannot employ experts to redesign the naira notes. This is a revamp not a redesign,” one Nigerian tweeted.