Thursday, February 22, 2024

CBN bans Nigerians from buying, selling bitcoin, other cryptos

In 2020, crypto marketplace Paxful reported that Nigeria had the world’s second-largest Bitcoin by trading volume.

• February 5, 2021
CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele. [CREDIT: Bloomberg]
CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele [CREDIT: Bloomberg]

The Central Bank of Nigeria has ordered banks and other financial institutions to close customer accounts used in trading cryptocurrencies and other related transactions. 

In a circular seen by Peoples Gazette after circulating on social media on Friday afternoon, the Nigerian bank regulator ordered deposit money banks, non-bank financial institutions and other financial institutions to “identify persons and/or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately. “

The CBN has been long taken a hardline position against cryptocurrencies, which have become a major unit of commerce across the world in recent years.  

In October last year, at the height of the #ENDSARS protests, the bank restricted some financial institutions from receiving or making crypto payments.

The restricted accounts belonged to predominantly young Nigerians who had either sent or received funds to run the #EndSARS protests. When the major fundraisers, Feminist Coalition, were blocked, a bitcoin wallet was set up which donors used to pour in support from across the world.

The CBN was helpless at blocking the inflow due to cryptocurrencies being run on decentralised monetary systems that no conventional regulator can restrain. 

In the past few weeks, trading in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies has skyrocketed as the global economy becomes increasingly volatile. Nigerians have started utilising crypto transactions to avoid the numerous challenges faced with traditional money transfer services. 

In 2020, crypto marketplace Paxful reported that Nigeria had the world’s second-largest Bitcoin by trading volume. In the last five years,  Nigerians have traded 60,215 Bitcoins, or more than $566 million USD, it was reported.

In 2017, CBN said it would not licence cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ripples, Monero, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Onecoin, amongst others, and any transactions conducted through them would not have the protection of the Nigerian law.

We have recently deactivated our website's comment provider in favour of other channels of distribution and commentary. We encourage you to join the conversation on our stories via our Facebook, Twitter and other social media pages.

More from Peoples Gazette

Katsina State

Politics

Katsina youths pledge to deliver over 2 million votes to Atiku

“Katsina State is Atiku’s political base because it is his second home.”

Napoli vs Barcelona

Sport

UCL: Osimhen on target as Napoli hold Barcelona in round of 16 first leg

Napoli struggled to make an impact in the first 45 minutes, failing to register a shot.

NSCDC officers

States

NSCDC nabs two for alleged ritual activities in Imo

He advised Imo people to be cautious when boarding buses.

President Bola Tinubu (Credit: Bola Tinubu)

NationWide

Tinubu appoints Ibrahim Gaga as executive director of NEXIM

Mr Ngelale said that Mr Tinubu expected Mr Gaga to bring renewed zeal and diligence to enhance NEXIM’s mandate.

Real Estate [Photo: Palton Morgan]

Economy

Experts advocate collaboration for real estate market growth

He said that the Nigerian real estate market had struggled due to shortage of investment capital.

Macky Sall

Africa

Senegal’s opposition candidates slam Macky Sall for election delay; call it ‘constitutional coup’

“An inexplicable slowness has been noted. Nothing has been done despite developments over the past week,” the 15 candidates said.

Late Governor Rotimi Akeredolu remains arrived in his hometown of Owo

States

Akeredolu’s remains arrive hometown of Owo amid tears

“Most importantly, we will continue to remember forever, your integrity, character and faith.”