The Real Meaning Of The Arabic Inscription On Naira Notes


You must have observed the Arabic inscription conspicuously written on the Nigerian naira notes and may be wondering how come and the reason behind it. These inscriptions can be found on N5, N10, N20, N50, N100, N200, N500 and N1000 notes.

Well, the Arabic inscription on the naira notes is actually not pure Arabic language but what is known as Ajami. Ajami is an Arabic style of writing Hausa language and it was included in the naira notes to allows the non-western educated northerners who could read Ajami to recognize and differentiate each naira notes for the ease of business transactions and financial dealings.‎

In the case of N500 the inscription means Naira Dari Biyar – Five hundred Naira.


NOTE: Ajam is an Arabic word meaning mute, which today refers to someone whose mother tongue is not Arabic.


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Salaudeen Olayinka

A lover of history

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