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EFCC arrests currency racketeers with redesigned Naira notes

Redesigned Naira Notes

*The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission affirms the operation followed due intelligence on activities of unscrupulous currency speculators exploiting consumers by offering new Naira notes for foreign currencies at an unapproved rate

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

Acting on intelligence in regard to the activities of certain unscrupulous currency speculators, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has disclosed the anti-graft regulatory agency apprehended members of a syndicate of currency racketeers hoarding and trading with redesigned Naira notes in Abuja, FCT.

ConsumerConnect learnt Mr. Wilson Uwujaren, Spokesman of EFCC, said that the arrest occurred in separate operations in the Zone 4 and Dei Dei axis of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), between Saturday and Monday, January 29, 2023.

Uwajaren noted the operation followed intelligence on activities of unscrupulous currency speculators, who were exploiting desperate citizens by offering them the new Naira notes for foreign currencies at below the going rate.

According to EFCC, the suspects have made useful statements. The agency’s spokesman further said these included disclosure that the suspects were acting with some unscrupulous officials of Money Deposit Banks (DMBs) in Nigeria.

Meanwhile, the Commission has assured Nigerians that it will extend the operation to all the major commercial centres across the country until all the syndicates involved in the illegal currency trade are demobilised.

The EFCC also warned financial system operators to desist from the sharp practices or risk arrest and prosecution.

How DSS intercepted currency syndicates with new banknotes

The country’s Department of State Services (DSS) earlier Monday, January 29 also said it intercepted some members of organised syndicates involved in the sale of the new redesigned Naira notes.

Dr. Peter Afunanya, Spokesman of DSS, in a statement said the Service in the course of its operations, also established that some commercial bank officials are aiding the economic malfeasance in the economy.

The security Service also warned the currency racketeers to desist from this ignoble act.

It is recalled the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) recently extended the earlier January 31 deadline for use of the old Naira notes as legal tender to February 10 this year.

The Bank explained that following President Muhammadu Buhari’s approval of the request for extension, Nigerian consumers are encouraged to deposit their old currency notes at their banks by the new deadline.

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