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FX scarcity: EFCC raids BDC hub in Abuja over alleged dollar mop-up

Author:
Busola Aro

Operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) have raided Wuse Zone 4, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, over allegations that some Bureaux De Change (BDC) operators are mopping up foreign currencies.

Wuse Zone 4 is the hub of many BDC operators in Abuja.

An EFCC official confirmed the raid to TheCable on Friday.

The official, however, refused to give further information on the invasion.

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According to reports, the invasion was a covert operation to “dislodge currency speculators who are alleged to be massively mopping up available foreign currencies”.

A source had told Channels Television that the raid was a result of weeks of surveillance in which agents of the EFCC have been monitoring the activities of most of the BDC operators in the axis.

The source further said the agency is working on intelligence that some forces with massive naira inflow have mobilised resources and are busy buying up available foreign currencies, especially US dollar, to either hoard or smuggle the same out of Nigeria.

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In the last few weeks, the naira has experienced further devaluation, dropping from about N580 to N707 per dollar at the parallel section of the foreign exchange market.

Street traders who spoke to TheCable on Wednesday said the free fall resulted from the lingering foreign exchange (FX) supply constraints.

Last week, Godwin Emefiele, governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, warned people, mostly politicians, who use naira to buy dollars for campaigns.

“We monitor liquidity in the system, and as we see that there’s excess liquidity, we will continue to use discretionary powers to move those liquids from the vault of the banks so that they do not get involved or in speculative activities with people who want to speculate with the currency,” Emefiele had said.

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