The first day of circulation of Bitcoin as a legal currency was marked by five protests that took to the main streets of San Salvador to reject its implementation.
The launch of Bitcoin as an exchange currency next to the US dollar in El Salvador was marked on Tuesday (07.09.2021) by the fall in the price of cryptocurrency and the rejection of thousands of people who took to the streets to protest.
El Salvador on Tuesday became the first country in the world to give legal tender to the cryptoasset, after the approval last June of the Bitcoin Law by the ruling party and allies of the Executive of Nayib Bukele in the Legislative Assembly. The use of Bitcoin as a form of payment is mandatory, according to the regulations, and every economic agent is obliged to accept the cryptocurrency. Falling prices and stumbles on the Goat Wallet
In the run-up to the entry into force of the aforementioned law, the Government of El Salvador bought 400 Bitcoins in at least two operations, which would amount to more than 21 million dollars with the price of Bitcoin exceeding 52,000 dollars. However, the cryptocurrency registered a fall of more than 17% on Tuesday, placing the value of the digital currency up to $ 43,050. With the passage of the hours it has moderated the fall and was placed, at least after 12.00 local time (18.00 GMT), above 46,000 dollars, according to various platforms.
Within the framework of this fall, Bukele published on his social networks that El Salvador acquired 150 more Bitcoins, with which the country has bought 550 units of the cryptocurrency. The government has not detailed the criteria used to make these purchases, the ways in which they were acquired and whether the purchase was made on an exchange platform or from a large holder of the cryptocurrency.
The Bukele Administration had announced that from 00.00 local time on Tuesday (06.00 GMT) the Salvadoran population could download on their cell phones the government electronic wallet called Chivo Wallet. But, a few hours later, the president posted on his Twitter account that “the system is disconnected while increasing the capacity of the servers.” The president added that “it is a relatively simple problem, but it cannot be fixed with the connected system.” It was at the edge of 11.00 local time (17.00 GMT) that Bukele announced that the application could now be downloaded. Information on the development and financing of the wallet and ATM network has not been revealed. Protests unite against Bitcoin and changes to the Judiciary
The first day of circulation of Bitcoin as a legal currency was also marked by five protests that took to the main streets of San Salvador to reject its implementation as a form of payment. The groups of demonstrators, who carried posters against Bitcoin, gathered in different parts of the capital and then mobilized to one of the entrances of the headquarters of the Legislative Assembly, where the plenary session corresponding to this week is held. Meanwhile, agents of the Maintenance of Order Unit (riot police) of the National Civil Police (PNC) placed a barrier with barbed wire to cut off the passage.
Among the groups protesting, and for the first time in El Salvador, dozens of judges also marched to demand that Congress repeal a legal reform that ceases judges of 60 years of life or with a career of 30 years, while in that body they initially refused to receive the document with their position.
“The Legislative Assembly has made an onslaught on the independence of powers and has practically neutralized one of the three powers, which is the Judiciary,” Judge and former Supreme Court justice Sidney Blanco told reporters. Judge Samuel Lizama indicated that, finally, “after multiple unreasonable obstacles and efforts, we received the letter that asks to repeal the decree of reforms to the Judicial Career Law and restore the Constitutional status.”
Last week, the congress – with a pro-government majority – reformed the Judicial Career Law to dismiss judges with the argument of purging the judicial system. This justification, which only restricts alleged corrupt practices in judges of 60 years of age or 30 years of career, was given by the deputies of the ruling New Ideas, but it is not in the approved decree.