- Nigeria's currency, Naira, crashed in value on Thursday selling for N405 and N420 to a dollar
- The development was created by the speculative activities of some Bureau De Change operators who believed that the CBN was planning to devalue the naira following the fall in the oil price
- The CBN has, however, released a statement explaining that it has no plan to devalue the naira and vowed to deal with any operator creating the panic in the market
The Nigerian economy may be facing another critical episode following the drastic fall of the oil price in the international market to as low as $35 per barrel.
The unfortunate situation led to panic among the country's Bureau De Change (BDC) operators, a development which eventually led to the naira being exchanged for N405 and N420 to a dollar on Thursday, March 12.
Speaking to The Punch newspaper on the development, Aminu Gwadabe who is the president of the Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria said the fall in the oil price raised speculations among the BDC operators and Nigerians in general, leading to the crash in the value of naira.
Gwadabe, however, said the speculations were unnecessary because the Central Bank of Nigeria has been consistent in supporting liquidity to the BDC sub-sector.
He stated that the CBN had maintained stability at N360 in more than three years consistently.
The BDC operators' association's president noted that the situation is returning to normality as naira eventually sold for N375 by the close of Thursday.
The CBN, according to Gwadabe, has also warned the BDC operators against illegal business activities while threatening to revoke the license of any operator found guilty.
The national bank has fined over 100 BDC operators over N5m for various offences, Gwadabe also noted.
Also, in a statement signed by Isaac Okorafor, CBN's director of corporate communications, the national bank said the crash in the value of naira was due to the speculative activities of the BDC operators who erroneously believed the bank was planning to devalue naira.
The CBN said the report that it was panning to devalue is false and just a plot by some dubious people to achieve selfish gains.
The bank said it is partnering with the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit to uncover the unscrupulous persons and FX dealers who are creating unnecessary panic.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng earlier reported that Africa’s richest man, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, on Wednesday, March 11, revealed that Nigeria’s economy is not working as he gave a painful verdict on efforts by governments to transform the nation’s economy.
Speaking at the roundtable parley with the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, with the theme “Going for Growth 2.0, the business mogul said Nigeria’s economic diversification programme has been largely sluggish and elusive.
Dangote also warned that the risks are huge if Nigeria fails to fast-track the diversification of her economy.
He said: “My heart bled when I read that Nigerian Customs collected N1.35trn import duties last year. It means the economy isn’t working. If the economy is working, the customs shouldn’t collect that much money, it is the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) that should.”
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