We acted in best interest of Nigerians by banning cryptocurrency, says Emefiele

We acted in best interest of Nigerians by banning cryptocurrency, says Emefiele

- Godwin Emefiele has provided more reasons why the CBN banned cryptocurrency trading in Nigeria

- The decision had sparked outrage across Nigeria especially among young people

- The CBN chief, however, told lawmakers that the decision was for a healthier Nigerian economy

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has clarified the recent decision of the apex bank concerning cryptocurrency, saying it is in the best interest of Nigerians.

The CBN chief made the comment on Tuesday, February 23 when he appeared before a joint Senate committee that summoned him over the directive.

Vanguard quoted him as saying cryptocurrency is not a legal tender in most nations of the world as it is not regulated by any Central Bank.

We acted in best interest of Nigerians by banning cryptocurrency, says Emefiele
Emefiele says the decision to ban cryptocurrency trading is in the best interest of Nigerians. Photo credit: @cenbank
Source: Twitter

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Meanwhile, a survey carried out by the World Economic Forum has revealed that Nigeria tops the list of countries using cryptocurrency globally.

According to the report, reliance on remittances and the prevalence of peer-to-peer phone payments have led to a steep rise in cryptocurrency use in Africa's largest economy.

In a related development, the Digital Rights Lawyers Initiative (DRLI) has taken steps to reverse the directive of the CBN.

The group has approached the Federal High Court in Lagos, urging the court to quash the directive prohibiting banks from dealing in cryptocurrencies and closing down suspected bank accounts.

On her part, Nigeria's former minister of education, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili has stated that the CBN should have:

1. Map all the legitimate risks associated with cryptocurrency

2. Gather a subset of the super brilliant Nigerian young minds in the financial technology market and

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3. Listen and learn more.

Research had earlier shown that in 2020 alone, over $400,000,000 (190 billion naira) worth of cryptocurrency was traded by Nigerians; a large amount of this volume was processed by Nigerian exchanges.

For instance, Buycoins, an indigenous cryptocurrency exchange, had $141,395,605 traded on its platform in 2020 alone. The company had previously raised $1.2million from foreign investors to expand its operations.

Indigenous exchanges provide value to the country through tax revenues as well as the added benefit of making Nigeria a stakeholder and avid competitor in the $1trillion cryptocurrency market.

Jerrywright Ukwu is a senior political/defence correspondent at Legit.ng based in Abuja. He is a graduate of the Nigerian Institute of Journalism, Lagos and the International Institute of Journalism in Abuja. He is also an active member of the Nigeria Union of Journalists. He spends his leisure-time reading history books.

Source: Legit

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