A body representing cryptocurrency and blockchain stakeholders in Nigeria has joined other crypto industry players in assailing the recent Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directive to banks. The CBN order, which seeks snuff out crypto entities from the banking system, took effect on February 5, 2020.
Not Just a Mere Reiteration
In a statement, the body, known as the Blockchain Industry Coordinating Committee of Nigeria (BICCON), also dismisses the CBN’s assertion that the new directive is just a “mere reiteration” of what it said in January 2017. The latest directive effectively banned financial institutions from providing services to persons and/or entities transacting in cryptocurrency.
Further, the BICCON castigates the CBN for failing to give “any adequate notice or court order of any court of competent jurisdiction.” Also highlighting the hastiness as well as the chaotic implementation of the order, the BICCON reveals how some crypto companies have been affected by this decision. The BICCON explains:
Since 5 February 2021, a number of persons and entities accounts have been closed. In one strange and exceptional case, the funds in the two corporate accounts of a cryptocurrency exchange were wiped out and then eventually closed.
Still, the representative body notes that the ban might face legal challenges since “there is currently no legislation by the National Assembly criminalizing or illegalizing trade in cryptocurrency in Nigeria.”
Senators Oppose CBN Directive
Meanwhile, prior to the release of the media statement by the BICCON, some members of the Nigerian Senate had expressed opposition to the CBN directive. According to reports, the Nigerian Senate wants the CBN to explain this decision, and the governor, Godwin Emefiele is set to appear before the legislative body.
However, at least one Senator, Sani Musa has come out in support of the CBN directive. In a speech, Musa claims cryptocurrencies, especially