Anti-Bitcoin protesters flood the streets of El Salvador
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Anti-Bitcoin protesters flood the streets of El Salvador

Saudu Clement
Saudu Clement

Annoyance and fear have trailed El Salvador’s upcoming Bitcoin Law as some citizens take to the street to protest against the decision.

The law is slated to fully take effect from September 7. Consequently, all economic agents in the country are expected to accept Bitcoin along with the dollar as a means of payment.

El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele had stated that the new law will be beneficial to the people and save the country close to $400 million in remittance commissions. He also suggested that it would guarantee quicker and more secure financial transactions.

But despite the supposed benefits of the decision, hundreds of protesters took to the streets to express their disapproval of the law, Reuters reported. Workers, veterans, and pensioners were among those that participated in the protests.

One of the major concerns highlighted by the protesters was the volatility and instability of the flagship crypto.

While speaking with Reuters, Stanley Quinteros, a member of the Supreme Court of Justice’s workers’ union, said that the compulsory adoption of Bitcoin could harm Salvadoran finances as there is no proven way to control or stabilize prices.

We know this coin fluctuates drastically. Its value changes from one second to another and we will have no control over it.

Some protesters pointed out that not many people want the Bitcoin law, and they are opposing the fact that its use could facilitate corruption in a country known for its authoritarian and non-transparent policies.

In other news, the Salvadoran Association of International Cargo Carriers (ASTIC) also organized massive protests a few days ago, demanding the amendment of Article 7 of the Bitcoin Law that demands the mandatory acceptance of Bitcoin.

ASTIC assured that they will begin to charge an additional 20% fee to those who pay freight with Bitcoin if their request is not granted. This is to protect them from the volatility of the cryptocurrency.

In a similar fashion, a group of activists, students, and unions gathered in front of Congress last month, requesting for the derogation of the Bitcoin Law. They claimed that the law was introduced and approved without any consultation and could potentially harm the interest of the people.

Bukele also has to deal with El Salvador’s Farabundo Martí National Liberation Front (FMLN) party, who is supporting a public lawsuit seeking to abolish the Bitcoin legal tender law, according to a report by BTC PEERS.