The Central Bank of Nigeria has accused the Abokifx, a website that collates the black market exchange rates of naira, of carrying out an “illegal activity that undermines the economy”.
The CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, said the publisher of platform, Oniwinde Adedotun, was involved in “illegal forex trading”.
The CBN has come under pressure in recent weeks after the value of naira plummeted following the bank’s decision to stop the sales of dollars to Bureaux De Change operators a month ago.
The value of the currency fell to 570 on Friday from less than 520 a dollar it traded before the ban. Most local newspapers rely on Abokifx for the parallel market rates.
Addressing journalists on Friday after the Monetary Policy Committee meeting that began Thursday, Mr Emefiele said the apex bank had been studying the activities of abokiFX in the last two years.
“There was a time we asked our colleagues to call the abokiFX to ask how he conducts the rates,” he said.
He alleged that Mr Adedotun lives in the UK and publishes arbitrary rates without contacting BDCs.
“He is a Nigerian, living in England, we will track him, Mr Oniwinde, we will track you.
“We cannot allow you to continue to kill our economy.”
Mr Emefiele alleged that Mr Adedotun uses his website for forex manipulations and speculations by purchasing forex to make a profit.
“It is completely illegal and unacceptable,” he said.
“Mr Oniwinde is an illegal fx dealer that have inflow and sold tens of millions of fx to several Nigerian companies in contravention of the fx law, he directly benefits from the rates he quotes daily on his website.”
Mr Adedotun could not be immediately reached Friday.
Mr. Emefiele said the only exchange rate market remains the I&E window.
“I am sorry to say that I do not, and I do not intend to recognise any fx in the market,” he said.
“Go to your bank. Even if your limit is above what the bank is selling, put it forward, and we will look into it.”
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