By Idowu Bankole
Former Vice president of Nigeria, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has condemned the ban placed on cryptocurrency transactions in Nigeria by the federal government led by President Muhammdu Buhari warning that urgent steps must be taken to opening up the economy and create more jobs for the teeming Nigerian Youths as unemployment remains one challenge facing the country.
The former Vice president made this known in a tweet thread on his Twitter handle on Saturday.
Atiku laments that unemployment is one major factor affecting the Nigerian economy and also a major cause of insecurity in the country.
Recall Vanguard reported how the CBN placed a ban on crypto accounts in the Nigerian Banks, warning that “breaches of this directive will attract severe regulatory sanctions.”
But the former vice president, Alhaji Atiku noted that there is immense pressure on the youths because of the rate of unemployment, saying it is a wrong timing to ban cryptocurrency in the country and advised for a revisit of the policy.
According to Atiku, “The number one challenge facing Nigeria is youth unemployment. In fact, it is not a challenge, it is an emergency. It affects our economy and is exacerbating insecurity in the nation.”
Atiku expresses sadness over the recent NBS report which revealed the low inflow of foreign capital into the country.
He said, “What Nigeria needs now, perhaps more than ever, are jobs and an opening up of our economy, especially after yesterday’s report by the National Bureau of Statistics indicated that foreign capital inflow into Nigeria is at a four year low, having plummeted from $23.9 billion in 2019 to just $9.68 billion in 2020.”
“Already, the nation suffered severe economic losses from the border closure and the effects of the #COVID19 pandemic.
Atiku faulted the timing of the ban and called for a reversal of the ban saying there certainly is a way to deal with criminal elements abusing the scheme.
“This is definitely the wrong time to introduce policies that will restrict the inflow of capital into Nigeria, and I urge that the policy to prohibit the dealing and transaction of cryptocurrencies be revisited.
“It is possible to regulate the sub-sector and prevent any abuse that may be damaging to national security. That may be a better option, than an outright shutdown.
Atiku stressed that it is the job of the government to create jobs to ease the pressure caused by unemployment on the Nigerian youths.
“There is already immense economic pressure on our youths. It must be the job of the government, therefore, to reduce that pressure, rather than adding to it.
“We must create jobs in Nigeria. We must expand the economy. We must remove every impediment towards investments. We owe the Nigerian people that much.”