By Abdullahi Ahmed, Tola Kehinde and Rosaline Ekwere

The naira, on Monday, appreciated to N1,250 per dollar at the parallel section of the foreign exchange (FX) market, according to reports confirmed by relevant stakeholders.

The FX rate is a 0.43 percent increase from the N1,280 recorded on March 29, yet prices of goods and services remain skyrocketed across Nigeria.

Currency traders in Lagos, also known as bureau de change (BDCs) operators, quoted the buying rate of the greenback at N1,230 and the selling price at N1,250 — leaving a profit margin of N20. 

“The dollar keeps declining and it is affecting business but business is picking up gradually,” a currency trader named Aliyu said.

At the official section of the FX market, the local currency depreciated by 0.69 percent to N1,309.39/$ on March 28 — from N1,300.43/$ on March 27.

Meanwhile, Aminu Gwadabe, president, Association of Bureau de Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), on March 31, said the recall of members into the FX market has led to stability in the exchange rate.

“The reconsideration of the BDCs into the mainstream foreign exchange market has not only cleared illegal economic behaviours of hoarding, rent-seeking, round tripping and FX holding position, and led to the emergence of exchange rate convergence,” Gwadabe said.

READ:  We Can Grow Our Food; Everyone Should Grow Something -Oluremi Tinubu

Gwadabe also said the increase in FX inflows through the CBN’s monetary tools boosts foreign reserves, granting the apex bank the power to defend the local currency.

Reacting to the development, Nigerian consumers called on President Bola Tinubu to direct all the relevant authorities and stakeholders to ensure that the gains recorded by the Naira reflect on prices of commodities and services across the country.

A respondent, Adewale Ojo, while speaking to our correspondent in Lagos frowned at attitude of Nigerian business men and women who took delight in increasing prices at slightest opportunities but would not reduce same when situations change for the better.

He said “The Nigerian government must put machineries in place to check the attitude of our manufacturers and business owners in the country. They are the real causes of hardship in Nigeria.

They are always quick and happy to increase prices of commodities and services when there’s a little change in the prices of Dollars, fuel and other factors. But when the situation improves, they won’t revert. It’s satanic and unpatriotic”.

READ:  UPDATES: What President Bola Tinubu told Qatari investors

Also speaking, Mr. Titus, a Calabar-based Civil servant said “When the Dollar was increasing, supermarket owners were reviewing upwards their prices on hourly basis. In fact, right in front of you, they would increase the prices from what you saw when you entered the supermarket.

If you ask why, they would make jest of you, asking if you are not in Nigeria to know that price of the Dollar was increasing. But now that it’s decreasing, none of them is reducing their prices”.

Yakubu Malik in Kano said “The Naira gain is useless to average Nigerians. Until the prices of goods are reduced, the fall of the Dollar remains a mere noise. Unfortunately, we don’t have a proactive government in place that would ensure that prices of goods and services are affordable for the citizenry.

“We pray that someday, the Almighty shall bless us with leaders who would respond proactively to unfavorable situations for the sake of the suffering masses.

READ:  BANDITRY: Arrest Sheik Gumi Within 7 Days -group gives FG ultimatum, states reasons

The rise or fall of the Naira or Dollar or any other currencies means nothing to an average Nigerian. If the government wants to take the credit, they must ensure that the Naira gains make meaning to Nigerians, otherwise it’s a normal political gimmick”.

It would be recalled that prices of cement, fuel and all commodities and services in Nigeria skyrocketed in the last few months in response to continued scarcity of foreign exchange.

Prior to the rebound of the Naira, prices of the Dollar and other foreign currencies had consistently gone up between last quarter of 2023 and mid March, 2024.

While the Dollar which is the most popular foreign exchange amongst Nigerian business class had risen to a record high of N2,000/Dollar, Pound Sterling was hovering above N2,350, according to information provided by a Bureau de Change operator who spoke to our correspondent.

As at the time of this report, the Dollar exchanges between N1,230 and N1,250 indicating a tremendous improvement but Nigerians have yet to feel the positive impact of the Naira gains.