The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed banks to close all accounts belonging to crypto exchanges and other businesses transacting in cryptocurrencies in the country.
The apex bank also warned of stiff penalties to any bank or financial institution that fails to comply with the directive.
The was contained in a circular dated 5th February 2021 distributed to deposit money banks (DMBs), non-bank financial institutions (NBFIs), and other financial institutions (OFIs).
The circular signed by Director of Banking Supervision, Bello Hassan stated: “The CBN circular of January 12, 2017 ref FPRIDIRGENT R/06/010 which DMBs, NBFIs and OFIs and members of the public on the risks associated with transactions in crypto currency refers.
“Further to other regulatory directive on the subject, the bank hereby wishes to remind regulated institutions that dealing in crypto currencies or facilitating payment from cryptocurrency exchanges is prohibited.
“Accordingly, or DMBs, OFIs, NBFIs, are advised to identify persons and /or entities transacting in or operating crypto currency exchanges within their system and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately.”
The CBN warned local financial institutions against having any transactions in crypto or facilitating payments for crypto exchanges.
Meanwhile, KanyiDaily had reported that Facebook is planning to launch its own bitcoin cryptocurrency will allow users of the messaging app WhatsApp, to transfer money to each other.