The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has warned Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) to always observe due diligence and desist from all forms of malpractices in foreign exchange (FX) transactions.
The apex bank gave the warning in a letter by Ozoemena Nnaji, Director of Trade and Exchange Department, addressed to the DMBs.
Nnaji urged the banks to not only ensure to know their customers but also to know their customers businesses.
She said the directive was necessitated by recent occurrences in the FX market.
“The CBN wishes to remind all banks that it is their responsibility to not only know their customers (KYC requirements) but also know their customers’ businesses (KYCB requirements).
“Given this responsibility and in view of recent occurrences in the market, the CBN will like to remind banks to desist from all forms of FX malpractices.
“We wish to reiterate that FX operating licenses of any bank or banks that are found culpable with ongoing investigations will be suspended for at least one year,” the director said. She urged all the DMBs concerned to take note and ensure compliance.
Meanwhile, the bank has condemned what it called a fake circulation in the social media of a circular with a fake CBN logo dated September 13, 2021 purportedly issued by its trade and exchange department to the effect that all Deposit Money Banks, International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs) and members of the public are to convert domiciliary account holdings into naira.
In a statement issued by its spokesman, Osita Nwanisobi yesterday, the bank said the notice should be discarded.
“We wish to reiterate that the bank has not contemplated, and will never contemplate any such line of action. The speculation is a completely false narrative aimed at triggering panic in the foreign exchange market,” the statement said.
The bank had previously assured members of the public that there was no plan whatsoever to convert the foreign exchange in the domiciliary accounts of customers to naira in order to check purported shortage of availability of the United States dollars.
Operators of domiciliary accounts and other members of the banking public were therefore advised to “completely disregard the fictitious documents and malicious rumours, and go about their legitimate foreign exchange transactions.
As “we have no doubt that these rumors are only aimed at impugning the integrity of the CBN and activating chaos in the system.”
Nwanisobi said the public should note that any circular issued by the CBN is posted on its website (www.cbn.gov.ng) for the attention of the general public.
“We also wish to warn corporate bodies and members of the public against the unauthorized use of the Bank’s logo for any purpose whatsoever. We have drawn the attention of appropriate authorities to this and culprits will be sanctioned accordingly,” he stated.