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ABCON suspends Amazon BDC over unethical practices

By on September 23, 2015

The Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) has suspended indefinitely, Amazon BDC, its directors and staff members over their involvement in unethical practices, pending the outcome of investigations by law enforcement agencies and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

The acting President, ABCON, Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, disclosed this at a media briefing in Lagos  monday.

Operatives of the Nigeria Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), last week arrested six persons, including the Manager of Amazon BDC, Mr. Nwokenta Emmanuel. They were arrested at the Excel Oriental Hotel Ikeja, for swallowing $156,000 intended for export to Brazil.
As a result of this, Gwadabe said ABCON was “shocked and highly embarrassed” by the discovery and involvement of a BDC operator in such an illegal act.

He condemned in its entirety, the actions of the manager of Amazon BDC, stating that his actions were sharp contrast to ABCON’s principles and code of conduct for BDC operators.

The ABCON boss reiterated that the association has a zero tolerance for non-compliance with regulatory requirement and for unethical conduct amongst its members.
According to him, it was for that purpose that the association created the office of Compliance Officer in its National Secretariat and in all its zonal offices and also  provided official vehicles for the compliance officers to regularly pay inspection visits to BDCs under their jurisdictions.

“Furthermore, the association has a Disciplinary and Investigative Committee that handles all cases of unethical conducts by BDC operators.

“Consequently, and in line with the zero tolerance stance of the Association, the Disciplinary and Investigative Committee of ABCON has commenced comprehensive investigations of Amazon BDC and the actions of its directors and staff.

“Furthermore, the Executive Council of ABCON hereby announces the indefinite   suspension of the Amazon BDC, its directors and staff, pending the outcome of the investigations by the Committee, the NDLEA, EFCC, CBN,” he said.

According to Gwadabe, while the move was not to pre-empt the outcome of the investigations on the matter, it was expected to serve as warning to all ABCON members that any case of illegality and unethical conduct will be severely dealt with by the association. “We call on all BDC operators not to allow anyone to use their services or license for money laundering or any act of illegality and criminality.

“I want to restate the role of BDCs in the foreign exchange market. In addition to providing across- the-counter retail foreign exchange services, BDCs also provide statistics to the CBN on transactions in the retail market.

“We also serve as channel of official intervention in the retail segment of the foreign exchange market, hence providing platform for the convergence of exchange rates in the country,” he said.