Former Presidential candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar has advised President Muhammadu Buhari administration not to shut down the Cryptocurrency business.

According to a statement credited to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Friday, the financial body ordered banks and financial institutions to shut down all Cryptocurrency accounts with immediate effect.

However, the former Presidential aspirant under the umbrella of PDP aired his opinion on the decision of the financial body to shut down cryptocurrency in the country. Atiku urged the government to regulate the sector rather than embarking on an outright shutdown.

The statement referenced the declining inflow of foreign capital into Nigeria from $23.9b in 2019 to $9.68b in 2020 and said the economy needs an expansion rather than a contraction.

The statement titled “We need to open up our economy, not close it” reads: “The number one challenge facing Nigeria is youth unemployment. In fact, it is not a challenge, it is an emergency. It affects our economy and is exacerbating insecurity in the nation.

“What Nigeria needs now, perhaps more than ever, are jobs and an opening up of our economy, especially after today’s report by the National Bureau of Statistics indicated that foreign capital inflow into Nigeria is at a four year low, having plummeted from $23.9 billion in 2019 to just $9.68 billion in 2020.

“Already, the nation suffered severe economic losses from the border closure and the effects of the #COVID19 pandemic.

“This is definitely the wrong time to introduce policies that will restrict the inflow of capital into Nigeria, and I urge that the policy to prohibit the dealing and transaction of cryptocurrencies be revisited.

“It is possible to regulate the sub-sector and prevent any abuse that may be inimical to national security. That may be a better option, than an outright shutdown.

“There is already immense economic pressure on our youths. It must be the job of the government, therefore, to reduce that pressure, rather than adding to it.

“We must create jobs in Nigeria. We must expand the economy. We must remove every impediment towards investments. We owe the Nigerian people that much.”

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