Despite a three-month ban on protests aimed at preventing the spread of Covid-19, a group of El Salvadorans, including left-wing unions, student unions and others, gathered in the National Assembly on Monday to protest the country’s plans To use bitcoin as currency.
The protest group, led by an organization called the Block of Resistance and Popular Rebellion, used banners and slogans to call for the Bitcoin law, which forces companies to repeal companies that have to accept BTC as a means of payment.
According to protesters, an estimated 77% of El Salvadorans think this is a bad idea.
“It is a law that creates legal uncertainty and can be used to defraud users and also facilitate money laundering,” said activist Idalia Zuñiga.
Another protester expressed concern about Bitcoin’s price volatility. “For folks earning the minimum wage, you might have $ 300 in Bitcoin one moment and $ 300 could become $ 50 the next day,” she said, demonstrating that the price of BTC is down to one ATH has fallen to half where it is today from $ 64,000 in April.
The protesters’ concerns are not new. International regulators have also pointed to Bitcoin-related fraud and money laundering systems as an aspect that makes them unacceptable worldwide.
The protesters also complained about the way the law was brought into being to commemorate the abuse of power by President Nayib Bukele. Despite the fact that a bill often goes through a tedious process of research, deliberation and adaptation, the Bitcoin law was passed in less than 6 hours after it was formally presented by Bukele to his party-controlled National Assembly.
Despite being approved by overwhelming votes from allies of the President, the Bitcoin law still needs 90 days to go into effect, meaning Salvadorans are required to accept Bitcoin by September.
Most are not ready. A recent poll found that around 77% of people are against Bukele’s Bitcoin Law because people still prefer US dollars over Bitcoin.
The largest opposition party in El Salvador’s Congress has also filed a lawsuit with the court to prevent the implementation of the Bitcoin law.
Cong Ton Dien
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