The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) in a statement by its Director of Corporate Communication, Mr. Ibrahim Muazu warned persons using foreign currencies as a means of exchange in the country, as anybody caught in the illegal act risks a six month jail term upon conviction.
Here is the statement below:
CENTRAL BANK OF NIGERIA
THE USE OF FOREIGN CURRENCY AS A MEDIUM OF EXCHANGE IN NIGERIA
The attention of the Bank has been drawn to the increasing use of foreign
currencies in the domestic economy as a medium of payment for goods and
services by individuals and corporates.
It has also been observed that some institutions price their goods and services in
foreign currencies and demand payments in foreign currencies rather than the
domestic currency (the Naira), which is the legal tender in Nigeria.
For the avoidance of doubt, the attention of the general public is hereby drawn
to the provisions of the CBN Act of 2007, which states inter-alia that “the currency
notes issued by the Bank shall be legal tender in Nigeria…for the payment of any
Furthermore, the Act stipulates that any person(s) who contravenes this provision is
guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a prescribed fine or six
This prohibition, however, is without prejudice to foreigners, visitors and tourists who
are encouraged to continue to use their cards for payments or exchange their
foreign currency for local currency at any of the authorized dealers’ outpost.
The general public is hereby advised to report any contravention of the provision
of this Act to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the
Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for appropriate action.
Director, Corporate Communications
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