A spokesperson for the Central Bank of Nigeria, Osita Nwanisobi, revealed that the launch of the much-hyped e-naira central bank digital currency (CBDC) has now been postponed to a later date. Nwanisobi’s announcement came less than 24 hours before the CBN was scheduled to launch the national digital currency. Central banks across countries are actively working on digital currencies to ward off competition from cryptocurrencies.
CBN and its partners are “working round the clock to ensure a seamless process.”
In a Facebook post that reveals the reasons behind the deference, Nwanisobi points to the clash of the CBDC’s launch date with Nigeria’s day of independence. According to the post, the spokesman explained that: The planned launch has now been deferred due to other key activities lined up to commemorate the country’s 61st Independence anniversary. However, despite this postponement, Nwanisobi reassures Nigerians that the CBN and its partners are “working round the clock to ensure a seamless process.” According to the central bank’s post and Nwanisobi, this is being done “for the overall benefit of the customer, particularly those in the rural areas and the unbanked population.”
Not all financial institutions are ready to use Enaira.
Meanwhile, in his response to suggestions as well as fears that some banks were not yet ready for the e-naira, Nwanisobi conceded that “not all banks customers were expected to commence transaction on the day of the launch.” The central bank’s spokesperson reportedly assured financial institutions in Nigeria that they “remained key actors and were a critical part of the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC).” The central bank of Nigeria has routinely reminded Nigerians of the CBDC’s launch date. However, just a few days before launch, a local payments firm claimed the CBN had infringed on its duly registered trademark.