Sunday, June 23, 2024

Nigerian banks closing accounts dealing with cryptocurrency

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Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi is an experienced and award winning journalist from Ghana. He has worked for several media brands both in Ghana and on the International scene. Isaac Kaledzi is currently serving as an African Correspondent for DW.

Nigeria’s Central Bank has told banks and other financial institutions in the country to close all cryptocurrency-related accounts.

Last week the bank in a statement said all financial institutions were prohibited from facilitating crypto currency payments.

“Further to earlier regulatory directives on the subject, the Bank hereby wishes to remind regulated institutions that dealing in cryptocurrencies or facilitating payments for cryptocurrency is prohibited,” the statement said.

According to the Central Bank of Nigeria financial institutions are to identify persons and entities transacting in, or, operating crypto currency exchanges and go ahead to close such accounts immediately.

The bank said “breaches of this directive will attract severe regulatory sanctions. This letter is with immediate effect.”

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One of the institutions dealing in crypto currency reacted to the news saying ““We are fully aware of the newest CBN circular and are going to be working with regulators to ensure our services are compliant. All trading on our platforms continues as usual, and all user funds are safe.”

Meanwhile Changpeng Zhao, CEO of crypto exchange Binance has announced that customers should “withdraw your NGN as early as possible to avoid potential channel issues. Will share more details as they become available.”

Nigeria is the second largest bitcoin market in the world after the United States.

The latest crackdown on cryptocurrency could undo the gains made in Nigeria, a country that has seen growth in virtual currency for the past five years.

Not many Nigerians are happy with the latest directive from the central bank and have been reacting on social media.


The cryptocurrency exchange that lost $135m



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