In what will come as a shock to many, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has banned any form of cryptocurrency transactions in the country
The apex bank also directed Deposit Money Banks (DMBs) and other financial institutions to close accounts of persons who are using their systems for such deals.
A press release jointly signed by Bello Hassan, CBN Director of Banking Supervision and Musa Jimoh, Director of Payments System Management Department, said : “Further to earlier regulatory directives on the subject, the bank hereby wishes to remind regulated institutions that dealing in crypto currencies or facilitating payments for cryptocurrency exchange is prohibited. Accordingly, all DMBs, NBFIs and OFIs are directed to identify persons and/or entities transacting in or operating crypto currency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately.”
The banking regulator further warned that any bank which flouts this order will be penalized accordingly
It is not in doubt that the CBN is averse to the issue of cryptocurrency
For instance and to further buttress the apex bank’ disdain for cryptocurrency, in 2018, it issued a circular to warn that cryptocurrencies are not legal tenders in the country. It must however, be stated that dealers and investors in any kind of cryptocurrency in Nigeria are not covered by law. Virtual currencies are transacted in exchange platforms that are unregulated globally
“Consumers may therefore lose their money without any legal redress in the event these exchangers collapse or close business.
“Members of the public are hereby warned that virtual currencies are not legal tender in Nigeria. Accordingly, we wish to caution all and sundry on the risks inherent in such activities,” the 2018 statement added Cryptocurrencies are Ethereum, Litecoin, Polkadot, Chainlink, Binance coin, Tether etc.