CBN Releases N200m as eNaira takes off




President Buhari and CBN Governor Emefiele, unveiling the eNaira. Photo by: THE PUNCH

By Tony Obiechina, Abuja

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, has integrated 33 Banks into the eNaira platform with N500m successfully minted by the apex bank for the take off of the digital currency programme.

The CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele, said this on Monday at the official launch of the Nigerian Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), known as the eNaira, at the State House, Abuja.

The launch of the eNaira is a culmination of several years of research work by the Central Bank of Nigeria in advancing the boundaries of payments system in order to make financial transactions easier and seamless for every strata of the society.

Following series of engagements with relevant stakeholders including the banking community, fintech operators, merchants and a cross section of Nigerians, the CBN designed the digital currency.

The eNaira, according to the apex bank, marks a major step forward in the evolution of money in Nigeria.

Speaking at the event, Emefiele said since the eNaira platform went live, there has been overwhelming interest and encouraging response from Nigerians and other parties across the world with over 2.5 million daily visits to the website.

He said so far, N200m has been issued to financial institutions, while over 2,000 customers have been onboarded.

According to him, over 120 merchants have successfully registered on the eNaira platform.

He said, “Today, customers who download the eNaira Speed Wallet App will be able to onboard and create their wallet; fund their eNaira wallet from their bank account; transfer eNaira from their wallet to another waller; make payment for purchases at registered merchant locations.

“Mr President, today you make history, yet again, with the launch of the eNaira – the first in Africa and one of the earliest around the world.

“Mr. President, as you make ground breaking reforms, there have been continuing debate on the true value of the Naira.

“Rather than worry today on the direction of the exchange rate, let us take a step back and analyze how we got here in the first place”, he said.

While unveiling the eNaira platform, President Muhammadu Buhari commended the CBN Governor and the entire management staff of the Bank “who worked tirelessly to make this day a reality”.

He further commended the apex Bank for ensuring that Nigeria became the first country in Africa to introduce the Digital Currency and one of the first in the whole world.

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