Nigerian fintech entrepreneurs have slammed the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) decision to select Bitt Inc as their fintech partner. They insist that the choice of Bitt Inc, a Barbados-based firm, undermines the central bank’s claims that it is “fighting for naira in the foreign exchange market.”
Market Capitalization of Bitt Inc.
In fact, as the Itedgenews report explains, some players in the country’s fintech industry are campaigning for the CBN to overturn this decision. They cite the small number of people employed by Bitt Inc. (three) and the “lower market capitalization of the fintech company compared to the big Nigerian fintech companies” as some of their main concerns.
Others, like fintech analyst Abu Idrissee, see the choice of Bitt Inc. over local companies as a continuation of the Nigerian practice of snubbering local solutions.
“With an abundance of domestic online payment processing platforms and over 30 fintech companies, Nigeria has the talent, expertise, experience, work models and capacity to deliver the e-naira or an Africa-wide e-currency locally and in one way to develop and strengthen our national income, honor and dignity, ”explained Idrissee.
Validity of Bitt Inc’s contract with CBN questioned
Meanwhile, opponents of the CBN’s election point out that the contract itself may not meet standards. According to the report, Nigerian ministries, departments and agencies are required by law to obtain approval from the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) before embarking on a project.
As a result, some opponents of Bitt Inc are now calling on NITDA “to check whether the CBN-e-naira contract complies with strict compliance with IT procurement processes”.
Still others like fintech analyst Adedoja Olawale have suggested that the selection of Bitt Inc. proves that the CBN itself is not practicing what it preaches. Olawa stated:
We are calling for an explanation for the CBN’s decision to hire a foreign company that has no pedigree compared to dozens of our domestic fintechs. This is pure capital flight.
Barely a month before the CBN begins testing the e-naira, it remains to be seen whether the central bank will heed these warnings and reverse its decision to choose Bitt Inc.
Do you agree that Bitt Inc is not the right fintech company to partner with the CBN? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.
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