#WelcomeToLagos: Funny Naira Nicknames You Should Know
Asides traveling overseas, Lagos is the usual domestic destination for Nigerians in search of greener pastures.
So, if you are one of those JJCs in town, chances are that you need to move around in commercial transportation – danfo, okada or keke marwa.
Added to your problem of not knowing the popular bus stops and landmarks is that the conductor seems to be speaking a language you don’t understand.
How they call Naira notes in Lagos is a major source of confusion. So, lets start with that.
Five Naira does not have a significantly popular nickname and I guess that is not a surprise; it does not have much value these days.
Faiba - This is the first one and it is the name given to the 10 Naira note. It is highly important because it is also a unit of measurement for other denominations.
So, when next you hear faiba, quickly do your calculations. Continue reading and you will understand better.
Shandy – Since
the 20 Naira note was introduced, it had been called Muri because it has the portrait of slain Head of State, General Muritala
Mohammed on it and this is not peculiar to Lagos.
But in Lagos and among commercial drivers, conductors and agberos, it is called Shandy.
When next you see a conductor, ask him for the meaning. Thank me later.
White – You probably know the 50 Naira note to be Wazo, and its OK because of the representation of Nigeria’s major tribes (Wazobia) on it but in Lagos, many times these boys call it White.
So, don’t be confused when you hear an agbero yelling at your conductor funmi n white! they aren’t talking about crack! Lol
Ten Faiba – Look up at the name for 10 Naira and this one will make sense immediately.
If faiba is 10 Naira, then 10 faiba is 100 Naira! Simple isn’t it?
Twenty Faiba – The same arithmetic works here. If faiba is 10 Naira, then 20 faiba is 200 Naira!
Figo – The last time I checked, this is the name of a famous Portuguese footballer - Luis Figo. How it became the name for our 500 Naira note is what beats me.
None of the Lagos danfo operators spoken to could explain it either but then, in Lagos, just like its traffic, you may never understand.
In addition, please note this one or you may get a slap from the aggressive ones before you realize your mistake.
One naira is a way of referring to N1,000 and so is two naira for N2,000 all the way up.
Men In Black
Now let’s go to the part that will wow you.
There is more to the 12 months in a calendar year than your birthday or knowing today’s date. For policemen, LASTMA officials and others, it means money.
When you see men of the Police standing on the road collecting what you call bribe, you probably do not know they have codes too.
Well, they do. Since the Naira is an essential part of the duty, they should have their own names for it.
Only the drivers understand their codes and that is probably why you don’t know but Bounce News found out.
January means N1,000, February is N2,000, March is N3,000 and so the list goes up to December which represents N12,000.
When you hear “half a month”, that is 500 Naira.
At this point I say welcome to Lagos.