In 18 Months, e-Naira Records N22bn Transactions, 13mn Wallets
In what may pass for a remarkable improvement and wider adoption of Nigeria’s digital currency, the value of transactions on eNaira hit N22 billion indicating a 68 per cent increase since the beginning of this year, 2023.
With over N10 billion of it minted, and about N3.429 billion of the naira currently in circulation, the number of wallets created so far has sharply risen to 13 million.
Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, disclosed this impressive improvement in the fortunes of the naira during a media briefing at the end of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting in Abuja on Tuesday.
“We have seen good progress in the adoption of the eNaira. We are happy that as we try to move more and more towards financial inclusion, and get people away from being excluded in the financial system, the naira remains one of the very portable options for all to adopt,” said Emefiele.
According to him, the eNaira emerged as the electronic payment channel of choice for financial inclusion and targeted social intervention programs the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management, and Social Development expressed keen interest in the aira product and adopted it for payment.
Consequently, as of March 20, 2023, approximately four million wallets were created for social intervention payment representing about 30 per cent of total wallets created so far.
He said, “These wallets were created in response to a request from the Ministry as part of plans for the next tranche of conditional cash transfer program by the second quarter of 2023.”
Giving more details about the success story of eNaira, Emefiele said that the 13 million wallets created in the last 18 months were categorized based on their level of usage with 12.6 million at Tier Zero, and 11,354 at Tier 1. A total of 367, 000 were at Tier 2, while the remaining 9,649 were at Tier 3 usage level.
While assuring that everything would be done to make sure thatheirra continues to improve, the CBN boss noted that the adoption rate of the digital currency had continued to increase and improve.
During the first anniversary celebration of the naira early this year, our fact check indicated that only 700,000 downloads were recorded, and the app was rated 2.9 stars, puncturing CBN’s claims then the digital currency was an instant success.
At that time, Emefiele at the anniversary ceremony had claimed that more than one million e-Naira App downloads had been recorded, elevating the digital currency as an instant success worthy of celebration.
However, our fact check revealed that only 700,000 downloads were recorded on both the Apple Store and Google Play Store combined as of September 27, 2022. In addition, the entire app was dogged by terrible reviews on both app stores as it received a 2.9-star rating, its highest rating.
Given the initial poor outing, CBN engaged tech experts to revamp the eNaira recently and also engaged consultants to drive its public campaign. The naira was launched and activated on October 25, 2021, by President Muhammadu Buhari with the slogan, “Same Naira, More possibilities”.
Since October 28, 2021, the eNaira Speed Wallet application has been available for download on Google Play Store and App store.