CBN Ban Cryptocurrencies Trade in Nigeria

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Barr. SHarafadeen Abiodun

 

The Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN has directed banks to close accounts of persons or entities involved in cryptocurrency transactions within their systems.

CBN gave the directives on Friday 5th February in a circular released and signed by Bello Hassan, Director for banking supervision, and Musa Jimoh, Director of the payment system management department, to deposit money banks (DMBs), non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs), and other financial institutions (OFIs).

CBN circular

 

The statement read:“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 exchanges is prohibited, ”

“Accordingly, all DMBs, NBFIs and OFIs are directed to identify persons and/or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately.”

The apex bank noted that disobedience to the directive will attract severe sanctions.

Recall, CBN had warned in the past that digital currencies such as bitcoin, litecoin, and others are largely used in terrorism financing and money laundering, considering the anonymity of virtual transactions.

It had also said that such currencies are not accepted as legal tender in Nigeria, warning people against invest in them.

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