The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has denied plans to amend the Foreign Exchange Act.
In a statement, the regulator says it remains committed to safeguarding the international value of the country’s legal tender.
It added that the plans of a 20% fine for any holder and confiscation of funds in domiciliary accounts of individuals is not true.
The news broke over the weekend that the federal government and the CBN were planning to stem volatility in the foreign exchange market with such plans.
The Nigerian Senate on Monday expressed surprise at the recommendation which was made by the Nigerian Law Reform Commission.
The commission recommended a review of the Nigerian Foreign Exchange Act to accommodate punishment for persons holding on to foreign currency.
The commission wants the law to empower the the Central Bank of Nigeria to jail people for up to two years or fine them for 20% of the amount of the foreign currency held in their possession for more than 30 days.
But the Senate’s through its spokesperson, Senator Aliyu Abdullahi, stated that the measure was disruptive and counter-productive and would undermine many of the reform efforts already underway in the legislature and by government ministries intended to boost investors’ confidence.
The proposed changes are said to be intended to help control capital flows and prevent foreign exchange from being taken out of Nigeria.