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CBN begins sale of dollars at N1,301 per USD 

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced the sale of foreign exchange to Bureau de Change (BDC) operators in the country.

 

This was contained in a memo signed by Hassan Mahmud, the director of Trade and Exchange Department at the apex bank.

 

According to the memo,  the move is part of CBN’s “strategic step” to increase liquidity and strengthen the naira against “manipulators”.

 

Mahmud noted that the CBN will sell the United States dollars to BDC operators at N1,301 per USD.

 

The BDC operators are expected to sell to customers at not more than 1% above the purchase rate from the CBN.

 

Recall that the naira recently traded as high as N1,800 to the dollar.

 

The statement reads: “Following the on-going reforms in the foreign exchange market, aimed at achieving an appropriate market determined exchange rate for the Naira, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has observed the continued price distortions at the retail end of the market, which is feeding into the parallel market and further widening the exchange rate premium.

 

“To this end, the CBN has approved the sale of foreign exchange to eligible Bureau De Change (BDCs) to meet the demand for invisible transactions. The sum of $20,000 is to be sold to each BDC at the rate of N1,301/$ – (representing the lower band rate of executed spot transactions at NAFEM for the previous trading day, as at today, 27th February 2024).

 

“All BCs are allowed to sell to end-users at a margin NOT MORE THAN one percent (1 %) above the purchase rate from CBN.

 

“All eligible BDCs are directed to make the Naira payment to the designated CB ForeignCurrency Deposit Naira Accounts and submit confirmation of payment, with other necessary documentations, for disbursement at the appropriate CBN Branches – ABUJA, AWKA, LAGOS and KANO)”

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Nigeria’s Central Bank fires 50 more staff

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has sacked 50 more staff across 29 departments on Monday, adding to the list of ongoing disengagements in the apex bank.

This brings the number to a total of 117 in the last few weeks.

The dismissal cuts across directors, deputy directors, assistant directors, principal managers, senior managers and lower ranking staff.

The distribution of termination letters, which started on March 15, has continued every other week with palpable apprehension amongst staff of every cadre as the management has not specified any standard criteria for the decisions, insiders told our correspondent.

Since the commencement of the sacking, officials of the apex bank have refused to comment on the matter.

Some Media attempts to get the reaction of Hakama Sidi Ali, the acting Director of Corporate Communication.

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Oil marketers have suggested a price of N550 per litre of petrol to Dangote

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Alhaji Abubakar Migandi Garima, the President of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria, IPMAN, has closed that disclosed discussion with Dangote over price of petrol is ongoing.

 

He said: “We have been discussing with Dangote Refinery. The discussion, centering on pricing, margins and other issues, is still ongoing.

 

“We have proposed that the lifting price should be N550 per litre in Lagos. The price of the product will differ from one part of Nigeria to another because of distance and cost of delivering petrol to different locations.

 

“We are currently waiting on Dangote Refinery to conclude and communicate the price per litre, so we can plan to lift the product when it comes on stream.

 

‘’We expect that the price of the locally refined petrol would be cheaper than imported petrol, due mainly to local availability of the bulk of its crude oil and removal of transportation cost.”

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CBN Sacks Another 40 Staff

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has continued with the disengagement of staff in furtherance of its ongoing restructuring as it sacked a fresh batch of 40 staff mostly from the development finance department (DFD), Daily Trust reports.

Details of those affected are sketchy but  we learnt that Musa Zgabawa Bulus, an Assistant Director of the CBN, heading the National Collateral Registry (NCR) was affected.

NCR is an initiative of CBN aimed at improving access to finance particularly for Nano Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) leveraging movable assets.

Daily Trust gathered that deputy directors and assistant directors were mostly affected with 22 from the DFD and the remaining 18 from Medicals and Procurement Services Department.

Recall that not less than 27 members of staff, most of them directors at the Central Bank of Nigeria, were affected by the first batch of dismissals, even as more are set to be axed in the coming days.

Amongst those affected were eight directors, 10 deputy directors, five assistant directors, two principal managers and two senior managers.

With the latest number of affected staff, the total has now reached 67, in what appears to be a series by the Olayemi Cardoso-led Board of Governors.

Why DFD staff were affected

Daily Trust learnt that the move may not be unconnected with the refocusing of the CBN away from development finance interventions.

The CBN governor had on several occasions voiced his concern about the development finance intervention of the apex bank.

On October 12, 2023, the CBN governor said the apex bank would pull back from direct development interventions, stressing the need for the apex bank to return to its core function of monetary policies and advisory roles to support economic growth.

Briefing after the last Monetary Policy Committee meeting, Cardoso said: “The intervention has two dysfunctions. One, it takes a lot of time for something you do not have an expertise to do, and two, if not carefully handled, creates a lot of distortions in your economy through inflow of money supply.

“The interventions that took place in the recent past were estimated in excess of N10 trillion. I’m not talking about ways or means. What was the budget of the federal government of Nigeria? What was the budget of the largest states in Nigeria? Do the maths and it would tell you the extent of damage too much of what may appear to be good things can do to an economy.”

Senior Management members of the CBN who spoke to our reporter on the condition of anonymity also raised concern about the perpetration of illegality which has seen the current Coordinator of the Currency Operations Department, Olayemi J. Solaja, append his signature on the Naira note.

The findings suggest that Mr Solaja has not yet gone through the process of being confirmed a full-fledged Director and his letter of appointment indicates that he is to Coordinate the affairs of the department.

According to the source: “The process has not been followed by the CBN Governor who talks about institutional discipline. How can someone sign the national currency as Director currency when not confirmed or appointed?

“From the history of currency to when naira and kobo were printed and minted, there is a CBN policy on modalities to sign Banknotes.”

 

In finding out who signs the currency in the absence of a substantive director, the source said: “They continue printing using the former director’s signature. Throughout the period of the acting appointment of the previous occupant, she did not sign the currency until she was given an appointment letter as a director.”

 

The Managing Director of the Nigerian Security Printing and Minting (NSPM) drew the attention of the CBN to the irregularity, The Deputy Governor, Operations, Mrs. Emem Nnan Usoro allegedly overruled, insisting that the coordinators’ name be imprinted on the currency.

The CBN rule book( a compendium of policies and Regulations) stipulates the process of appointment in the Bank for appointment as Director is as follows: (a) Advertisement of the vacancy, indicating the requirements for a prospective candidate. (b) Screening of candidates/documentation (c) Conducting interviews for qualified candidates (d) Final results/ communications of appointment.

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