Some cattle traders in Bauchi have expressed concern over the low patronage of the animals occasioned by the scarcity of old and new naira notes.
A check by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) at Kasuwar Shanu market in the Bauchi metropolis on Sunday showed that the development negatively affected cattle trade in the area.
The market, which served as a transit point for transporting cattle to other parts of the country, witnessed a sharp decrease in transactions due to naira scarcity.
NAN checked showed that a few number of cows were brought to the market weekly as against about 1,000 before the currency swap.
The Leader of Bauchi Cattle Market, Alhaji Musa Piro said that naira scarcity crippled transactions in the market as cattle trade operates on cash-and-carry basis.
He said that the trend made transactions practically impossible and exposed traders to hardship.
“Cattle rearers and breeders who brought their animals from villages for sale only accept cash.
“They don’t have bank accounts or devices to opt for internet banking, and even the account holders are not comfortable with e-payment platforms.
“Payment through electronic platform negatively affected business activities in the market.
“Cattle trade requires huge sum of money, and epileptic network is making internet banking and e-payment difficult, this made the trade less attractive,” he said.
Piro said that some traders had lost their monies to fraudsters who swindled them through dubious money transfer and e-payment platforms.
“We had a bad experience of money transfer at Mararaba Liman Katagum market, two cows were sold at N400,000.
“And the buyer paid only N4,000 as against N400,000 to the middle man through e – payment platform.
“He left without a trace,” he said.
This, he said, made the traders jittery and rejected money transfers as well as other alternative payments system to guard against losses.
Piro recalled that about 25 trucks of cattle were being transported daily from the market to other parts of the country before the implementation of the cashless policy.
Another trader, Abubakar Gidado said cattle owners rejected money transfers and preferred transactions in cash.
He said the trend resulted in a crash in cattle prices in markets across the state.
“Both buyers and sellers are demanding cash, and not everybody knows how to do a money transfer.
“We are facing a difficult situation, and the market condition is bad owing to naira scarcity,” he said.
He urged the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), to adopt practical measures to end Naira scarcity, to encourage trade and protect them from losses. (NAN)