About 20% of the Nigerian currency, the naira, in circulation in the West African state is fake, an ex-deputy governor of the central bank, Obadiah Mailafia, has said.
Speaking at a budget hearing in the National Assembly yesterday, Obadiah Mailafia called on the authorities to crackdown on fake money to protect the economy:
“When fake currencies of that magnitude circulate, original currencies become scarce. Bad money chases away good money.”
He blamed the economic crisis in Nigeria on a wide range of factors – including the sharp fall in oil prices, dwindling foreign reserves, poor banking practices, regulatory failures and corruption.
Mr Mailafia warned the government not to increase interest rates, saying “it would further compound the hardship Nigerians are facing”.