BICCON: Blockchain Body Slams CBN Cryptocurrency Ban in Nigeria

By: Michael Wilson

BICCON: Blockchain Body Slams CBN Cryptocurrency Ban in Nigeria

February 17, 2021 11:08 AM

Nigerian blockchain and cryptocurrency body have aired their voice by other major crypto players in the industry to criticize the recent directives by the Central Bank of Nigeria to ban banks from servicing crypto exchanges.


The circular which stopped banks and other financial institutions to stop servicing crypto exchanges took effect on February 5, 2020. The CBN has been faced with heavy criticism from Nigerian senators, with the CBN director summoned for a clearer interpretation of the recent directive.


The Nigerian blockchain and cryptocurrency group (BICCON) slams the Central Bank of Nigeria for "lack of notice before the ban or any sort of order from a competent Court". Also, the BICCON reveals how the unsettled implementation of the order has affected various crypto companies.


The CBN claims the recent directives were just a mere reiteration of that of 2017. However, BICCON was quick to dismiss such claims as its latest directive effectively banned banks from servicing crypto companies or to persons transacting in cryptocurrency.


The group explained:
Several accounts belonging to companies and persons involved in crypto transactions have been closed. A crypto exchange reported its account was closed and funds eventually wiped off.


Senate house debate
Last week some sections of the Nigerian Senate had expressed opposition to the CBN directive. As previously reported by coinnewsafrica, the Nigerian Senate wants the CBN to explain this decision, and the director, Godwin Emefiele has been summoned to appear before the Senate.


CBN receives SEC's backing
The regulators who announced on September 2020, stating it's plans to come up with a regulatory framework for cryptocurrencies in the country. The SEC has jumped on in support of the CBN order claiming it further needs to "analyze and understand the risks better."


BICCON pointed out that the ban could face legal challenges as “currently there is no legislation by the National Assembly criminalizing or illegalizing trade in cryptocurrency in the country.”