e-Naira: CBN postpones scheduled launch despite scaling infringement court case

The CBN will introduce digital currency in Nigeria - Godwin Emefiele
CBN Governor, Mr Godwin Emefiele

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has postponed the much-anticipated launch of Nigeria’s digital currency, E-naira, which was scheduled for today.

The Apex bank made this move known in Abuja today through Mr Osita Nwanisobi, its Director of Corporate Communications. He confirmed in his statement that the Central Bank took the decision to postpone the planned launch for today in consideration of other activities lined up to commemorate the independence day. 

“The CBN took the decision to postpone the launch, which had been initially planned to coincide with the Independence anniversary, in deference to the mood of national rededication to the collective dream of One Nigeria,” Nwanisobi noted.

This postponement comes despite the fact that the launch of the e-Naira has been approved by a Federal High Court in Abuja.

CBN postpones the launch of eNaira scheduled for today even as the Court okays the rollout

Pending court case

Previously, a cease and desist notification was sent to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) concerning its proposed use of the name “eNaira.” The litigation was brought up by Olakunle Agbebi & Co, solicitors to ENaira Payment Solutions Limited over a claim of trademark infringement.

“Our client is the holder of the Trademark ‘ENaira’ registered in Class 36 and Class 42. It has come to our client’s notice that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has announced the planning launching of a financial under what it termed its Central Bank Digital Currency to be known as ‘eNaira’.

The court’s decision for the central bank to go ahead with the launch was not to strike out the motion but held that the launch of the digital currency would be in the interest if the country and the plaintiff could be adequately compensated.

5 important things you need to know about Nigeria's digital currency, e-Naira

Speaking on the digital currency, Mr Osita Nwanisobi assured us that the central bank and its other partners were working tirelessly to ensure a seamless process that would be in the interest of all customers, particularly those in rural areas and the unbanked population.

He reiterated that the digital currency would provide immense benefits to Nigerians who would also be able to carry out peer-to-peer transfers as well as pay for goods and services to selected merchants. 

The director went on to add that the e-Naira will limit the use of currency and ensure the stability of the Nigerian economy. On the readiness of banks and other financial institutions, he stressed that transactions are to commence on the day of the launch, but reaffirms that not all bank customers will be able to transact on the debit day of launch as the digital currency is a journey.

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