There is a barrage of outrage currently on social media platforms after reports confirmed that the Nigerian current, the Naira has crashed further in the parallel market.
The exchange rate at the peer-to-peer market depreciated significantly to a record low of N667/$1 in the early hours of Tuesday, representing a 1.72% decline compared to N655.73/$1 recorded on Monday morning.
This was the highest rate recorded in the unofficial market amid a further scarcity of forex in the market.
However, while citizens were yet done expressing their grievances over the depreciation, the nation’s currency plummet on Wednesday to N710 against the U.S. dollar on the exchange platform Aboki Forex.
A report by the Peoples Gazette showed that the current parallel market rate pegged at N710 to a dollar.
The latest development comes a year after the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) prohibited the sale of foreign currency to bureau de change operators.
The apex bank had previously prohibited the sale of foreign exchange to BDC operators due to their unauthorized sales of foreign exchange above the market they were authorized to serve.
The declaration despite a series of rejections has come to stay and citizens appeared to have accepted the situation in a jiffy.
Prior to the ban, BDC operators were a major black market, providing exchange rate support to those who could not formally access foreign currencies directly from the CBN.
The suspension of BDC operators’ ability to source foreign exchange from the CBN is seen as a threat to the country’s economy as it could mount further pressure on the national currency.
It could be recalled that when CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele banned the sale of forex to BDC, the exchange rate was around N501 to a dollar. However, a year after the ban, the value of the naira plummeted to N670 to a dollar.
In an attempt to further restrict the flow of forex at the parallel market, the CBN threatened to arrest and prosecute Nigerians using naira to buy dollars last week.
“For those taking money from banks to buy dollars, it is illegal to do so. If the security agencies hold you, you will know the implication of that,” Emefiele said at a Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting in Lagos months ago.