The Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON) says 26 members have been arrested by security operatives, over alleged unlawful foreign exchange (FX) transactions.
Aminu Gwadabe, president of ABCON, disclosed this in a statement on Friday.
On Wednesday, the association’s north-west chapter had demanded the immediate release of the members who were arrested on March 9, 2021, by the Department of State Security Services (DSS).
Rilwan Idris, ABCON’s solicitor, alleged that the DSS had illegally detained the members for more than two weeks after they honoured an invitation from security operatives.
The association asked DSS to either release the 26 bureaus de change operators or charge them to court as required by law.
In response to the allegations, Gwadabe said the association has been in communication with the authorities over the development and understands that the investigation borders on issues relating to money laundering, terrorism financing and Know Your Customer status.
“ABCON considers these as serious allegations especially given the security challenges across the country.
“We strongly identify with the desire of every patriotic citizen for thorough investigation with the authorities following every possible lead and taking necessary measures that could improve the security situation in the country.
“We, however, appeal to the authorities to expedite their work to ensure that innocent people that have been caught up in this investigation can be identified quickly and released so that they can return to their anxious families and resume their lives.
“We also trust that the authorities will follow the rule of law and ensure those with a case to answer have their day in court. The rule of law is after all the foundation upon which every functional society stands.”
Gwadabe assured the general public of ABCON’s willingness to fully cooperate with relevant agencies to ensure the association’s business is not in any way used or exploited for any form of malpractice or activity that is against the laws of the Nigeria.