In January 2024, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Olayemi Cardso, assured the populace of the clearance of the verified backlog across all sectors and the restoration of confidence in the Nigerian foreign exchange market. The Central Bank of Nigeria, in fulfilment of its commitment to redress the outstanding foreign exchange debts owed to airlines in the country, has completed the payment of all verified airline claims with an additional $64.44 million to the affected airlines, according to a statement titled “FX Backlog: CBN Concludes Payment of All Verified Claims By Airlines” and issued by the CBN Acting Director of Corporate Communications, Mrs. Hakama Sidi Ali.


In response to that promise, the International Air Transport Association brought to light the trapped fund of $700 million in the Nigerian FX market, irrespective of the repayment of $64.44 million.


Allegations surfaced months later that the CBN had cleared the backlog twice. Kingsley Nwokoma, the President of the Association of Foreign Airlines and Representatives in Nigeria (AFARN), has called out the Central Bank of Nigeria to embrace transparency and show evidence of payment. This will aid the public in verifying the case and the acclaimed settlement.


By Chidimma NWAFOR

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