Scarcity Of Coins: BEAC Says They Release Coins, But Business People Refuse To Use Them


BEAC says it releases coins of smaller denominations, but vendors and service providers turn them down.
It has emerged that vendors and service providers in the city of Yaounde and other parts of the country continue to turn down FCFA coins of smaller denominations; especially FCFA One, FCFA two, FCFA five, and FCFA 10, during business transactions. The lukewarm attitude has in turn pushed users to shun the coins issued by the Bank of Central African States (BEAC).
A trader accosted yesterday at the Central Market in Yaounde was issued 20 FCFA 25 coins in return for his merchandise, but the trader turned it turn, despite the fact that his product was about to be purchased at a good price. “I don’t take such coins,” the petty trader replied in broken French, noting that he could change as much as a FCFA 10,000 note rather than receive the coins. Reminded it is criminal to refuse to accept a legal tender in force, he replied: “Even the judge who will rule on such a case would not take these coins.”

Some supermarkets and public utility companies, users are reimbursed with such smaller denominations, but the same entities would hardly accept them for the payment of their goods and services.
It should be noted that the denial of any denomination of the currency in Cameroon is punishable by law. Section 223 of the New Cameroon Penal Code stipulates: “Whoever refuses any note or coin being legal tender in the Republic and to the extent that it is legal tender, shall be punished with imprisonment for from 10 (ten) days to 3 (three) months, or with fine of from FCFA 1000 (one thousand) to FCFA 100 000 (one hundred thousand), or with both such imprisonment and fine.”

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