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CBN to crack down bank customers using fake visas to acquire forex

To sustain the stability of the foreign exchange market, the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN Tuesday, read the riot act to bank customers using fake visas to acquire foreign currencies for purposes other than intended including those cancelling their flight tickets after purchasing forex.

In a circular to all banks signed by CBN’s Director of Banking Supervision, Mr Haruna Mustapha, the bank directed them to immediately publish the names of customers found circumventing the new CBN policy on the sale of forex for overseas personal and business travel.

The circular read: “The CBN has received and noted with concern reports of sharp practices by some unscrupulous customers to circumvent the new CBN policy on the sale of forex for overseas personal and business travel. Some of these unwholesome practices include the use of fake visas and cancellation of air tickets after purchase of PTA/BTA. This trend, if not curbed, portends risk to the integrity and stability of the forex market.

“Consequently, further to the various measures already put in place, all banks are hereby directed to publish on their websites the names and BVN of defaulting customers who present fake travel documents or cancel their tickets and fail to return the purchased PTA/BTA within two weeks as stipulated in the customer declaration form signed by them”. Last week, many banks said there was a surge in customers’ requests for forex but mainly with fake visas, putting a clog in the wheel of their operations as forex custodians.

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