No plan to convert domiciliary accounts to naira, CBN insists

September 12, 2021
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•Disowns fake circular on social media

James Emejo in Abuja
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has again dispelled speculations that it was planning to convert the foreign exchange (FX) in domiciliary accounts of bank customers into naira.
The apex bank has also disowned a fake circulation in social media circles, of a circular with its fake logo curiously dated ‘September 13, 2021’ and purportedly issued by it to the effect that all domiciliary account holdings are to be converted into naira.

The bank warned corporate bodies and the public against the use of the CBN’s logo under any guise.
This is coming as Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has commended the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele; the President, African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina, and other recipients of awards at the 2020 Leadership Conference and Awards, held in Abuja over the weekend.

The clarification on dollar accounts came against the backdrop of false social media reports making the rounds that the apex bank had issued a circular to banks to “convert domiciliary account holdings into naira”.
However, CBN’s Director, Corporate Communications, Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, in a statement yesterday insisted that the bank had not “contemplated, and will never contemplate, any such line of action”.

He said: “The speculation is a completely false narrative aimed at triggering panic in the foreign exchange market.
“It will be recalled that the bank had previously assured members of the public that there was no plan whatsoever to convert the foreign exchange in the domiciliary accounts of customers into naira to check purported shortage of availability of the United States dollars.

“Operators of domiciliary accounts and other members of the banking public are therefore advised to completely disregard these fictitious documents and malicious rumours, and go about their legitimate foreign exchange transactions, as we do not doubt that these rumours are only aimed at impugning the integrity of the CBN and activating chaos in the system.”
He pointed out that any circular issued by the apex bank would usually be posted on its website (www.cbn.gov.ng) for the attention of the public.

The bank further warned corporate bodies and members of the public against the unauthorised use of the CBN logo for any purpose whatsoever, adding that the attention of appropriate authorities had been drawn to this effect while culprits would be sanctioned accordingly.

The CBN said its attention had been drawn to a “fake circulation, in social media circles, of a circular with a fake CBN logo curiously dated ‘13 September 2021’, and purportedly issued by its Trade and Exchange Department to the effect that all Deposit Money Banks, International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) and members of the public are to convert domiciliary account holdings into naira”.

The bank had earlier clarified that it does not intend to convert their dollar accounts into naira.
On August 2, the apex bank had refuted speculations that it was planning to convert customers’ domiciliary accounts into naira.
The bank further assured members of the public that it would monitor the commercial banks to ensure they meet the legitimate FX demands of customers.

It had dismissed insinuations in some quarters that it planned to convert FX in the domiciliary accounts of customers into naira to check the purported shortage of availability of the dollars.
Meanwhile, in his special remarks at The Leadership Awards event chaired by the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar III, Osinbajo commended the recipients for their respective leadership roles, which he said should serve as inspiration to other Nigerians, irrespective of origin or religion.

While paying tribute to the late founder of Leadership Media Group, Mr. Sam Nda-Isaiah, who he described as a detribalised Nigeria, Osinbajo urged Nigerians to embrace peace and guard against actions capable of disintegrating the country.
Echoing the views of the Vice president, the Sultan of Sokoto enjoined Nigerians to focus more on issues that bind the country together rather than dwell on those that threaten to divide the country.

On his part, Adesina urged the federal government to consider the economic investment as a way to address the spate of insecurity in the country instead of relying mainly on the military approach.
Top of the list of awardees as joint Leadership Persons of the Year 2020 was the Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele; the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr. Akinwunmi Adesina; and the Governor of Borno State, Professor Babagana Umara Zulum.

In a citation, the organisers said Emefiele was awarded the Leadership Person of the Year 2020 “for a lifestyle of service that held the economy and the nation together in the face of a monumental global crisis; for his consequential interventions that turn crises into moments of economic opportunity, and for positively redefining the role of the Central Bank”.

The highpoint of the evening was the presentation of the Person of the Year Award by Osinbajo to Emefiele, who was represented at the event by his Deputy Governor in charge of Economic Policy, Dr. Kingsley Obiora.
Other recipients on the night were Governors Mai Mala Buni (Yobe) and Godwin Obaseki (Edo), who were awarded Politicians of the Year 2020; and the trio of Governors Ezenwo Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos), and Abdulrahman AbdulRazaq (Kwara), who were named Governors of the Year 2020.

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