The Central Bank of Nigeria on Thursday announced the postponement of the planned unveiling of the digital currency, eNaira.
The launch was initially scheduled for October 1, but was postponed due to other activities lined up to commemorate the country’s 61st Independence Anniversary.
The apex bank’s Director of Communications, Osita Nwasinobi, explained in a statement that the CBN took the decision to postpone the launch, which had been initially planned to coincide with the Independence anniversary, in deference to the mood of national rededication to the collective dream of One Nigeria.
The statement was titled, “CBN defers eNaira launch to mark Independence Anniversary”
It read in part, “Ahead of the anticipated launch of Nigeria’s Central Bank Digital Currency, known as eNaira, the Spokesman of the Central bank of Nigeria, Mr. Osita Nwanisobi, says the planned unveiling on October 1, 2021 has now been deferred due to other key activities lined up to commemorate the country’s 61st Independence Anniversary.”
While assuring that there was no cause for alarm, Nwasinobi said the CBN and other partners were working round the clock to ensure a seamless process that will be for the overall benefit of the customer, particularly those in the rural areas and the unbanked population.
Reiterating the benefits of the eNaira, he stressed that Nigerians would be able to carry out peer-to-peer transfer to another person’s eNaira wallet as well as pay for goods and services at selected merchants.
He added that the eNaira would also help reduce the use of cash and ensure stability of the Nigerian economy.
On the readiness of banks and other financial institutions in the financial ecosystem for the launch of the eNaira, he reiterated that the digital currency was a journey.
He explained that not all banks customers were expected to commence transaction on the day of the launch.
The CBN Spokesperson, however, assured that financial institutions in Nigeria remained key actors and were a critical part of the Central Bank Digital Currency.
Nwanisobi also noted that the CBN was mindful of concerns expressed about the eNaira, being among the first CBDCs in the world.
According to him, the Bank had put a structure in place to promptly address any issue that might arise from the pilot implementation of the eNaira.