It has been reported that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) says speculations that the apex bank is considering converting foreign exchange (FX) in the domiciliary accounts of customers to naira should be ignored.
This was reportedly disclosed on Monday in Abuja, by Osita Nwanisobi, the CBN acting director in charge of corporate communications. In his words, those making such allegations had “criminal speculators whose intention was to create panic in the foreign exchange market”.
Meanwhile, there were earlier reports from CBN on discontinuing sales of FX to Bureau De Change operators(BDCs).
According to the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, BDCs are becoming agents for illegal financial flows, and working with corrupt people to conduct money laundering in Nigeria.
However, this announcement has heightened fears of forex scarcity among Nigerians and led to a significant drop in the value of the naira against the dollar.
While addressing CBN’s plan to check the purported unavailability of forex, Nwasinobi has reportedly assured Nigerians that CBN will not tamper with the foreign exchange deposits in the accounts of customers.
According to him, “At no time did the CBN ever imply that it would tinker with the foreign exchange deposits of customers.”
The director reportedly urged operators of domiciliary accounts and other members of the banking public to go about their legitimate foreign exchange transactions, and disregard fictitious stories that can create chaos.