In the second instalment of the Money Series, we are taking a step up the currency ladder and discussing the ten Naira note.
As the second note in the Naira ascendancy, the ten naira note shares a similar origin story as the five naira note before it. The Naira was declared the official currency of exchange for Nigeria in 1973 wherein the Central Bank of Nigeria issues the bank notes in several denominations. There are currently eight bank note denominations in circulation today and the ten naira note is one of the bank notes that has been in circulation from 1973 to date.
The earlier version of the ten naira note from 1973-1978 was carmine and dark blue on multicolour underprint with a bank building at the left center in the front. The back of the note had a carmin dam at the center.
In 1979, a new ten naira note was created which is similar to the form obtainable today. The red on multi coloured underprint ten naira banknote shows the portrait of Nigerian educationist, statesman, activist and Politian Alvan Ikoku on the front side and two Fulani milkmaids carrying calabashes on their heads on the reverse side. The illustration of the Fulani milkmaids on the reverse side of the ten naira note was culled from a photo taken by John Hinde. Other featured emblems include the Nigerian National Coat of Arms, a sketch map of the nation and the denomination in various languages.
Alvan Azinna Ikoku (1900-1971) was born in present day Abia State and received his education at the Hope Waddell College Calabar. He earned his degree from the Univerity of London in 1928 through its external program and began tutoring in 1920. In 1932, he established the Aggrey Memorial Secondary School and by 1946 he was nominated to the Eastern Nigeria House of Assembly and assigned to the Ministry of Education. In 1946 he became part of the Legislative Council in Lagos as one of the three representatives of the Eastern Region. He championed may causes in the educational development in Nigeria through many endeavours. Several national monuments have been commemorated in his memory such as the Alvan Ikoku Federal College of Education in Owerri, Imo State.
The ten naira note is a more popular lesser denomination Naira note and although like the five naira note, its purchase value has greatly reduced, it still operates as it always has as a means of exchange. Can you remember what your favourite thing to do with the ten naira note growing up was? For one, there was a time when the best biscuits at your neighbourhood kiosks cost ten naira. Fun times.
Please share your experiences with the ten naira note in the comment section and do remember to keep the conversation going on all our social media platforms