Dollar speculation: EFCC raids bureau de change operators in Abuja

AMID concerns of the influence of market speculators on the depletion of the naira, operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) today stormed Wuse Zone 4, Abuja, home to most bureau de change operators (BDCs) in the Federal Capital Territory.

An informed source, who was privy to the raid, said it was a covert operation to dislodge currency speculators, who were alleged to be massively mopping up available foreign currencies, especially the dollar.


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The raid was said to be the product of weeks of surveillance during which agents of the EFCC monitored the activities of most of the bureau de change operators in the Wuse 4 axis.

The anti-graft agency was understood to be working on intelligence that some elements with massive naira inflow had mobilized resources and were busy buying up available foreign currencies, especially the United States dollar, that they intended to either hoard or smuggle out of Nigeria.

Some operatives of the Commission had also been spotted at major airports in the country, in what a source said was a coordinated nationwide operation that would be extended to all the major commercial cities like Kano, Lagos and Port Harcourt.

    There has lately been a massive run on the value of the Naira, with the currency presently exchanging for over N700 to a dollar.

    When TheICIR contacted the EFCC spokesman, Wilson Uwajuren, for his comments on the matter, he replied “there would be an official response to the issue later.”

    The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had earlier today issued a statement warning Nigerians on the activities of market speculators following the deep crash yesterday of the naira against the dollar, hitting an all-time low of N710 to the American currency, and dealing a massive blow to businesses and the overall economy.

    However, the naira has remained stable at N420/$1 on the official market.

    Harrison Edeh is a journalist with the International Centre for Investigative Reporting, always determined to drive advocacy for good governance through holding public officials and businesses accountable.

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