The Central Bank of Nigeria has ordered banks and other financial institutions to freeze customer accounts used in trading cryptocurrencies and other related transactions.
This was contained in a CBN circular posted on social media on Friday. In the circular, the apex bank ordered closure of deposit money banks, non-bank financial institutions and other financial institutions to “identify persons and/or entities transacting in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges within their systems and ensure that such accounts are closed immediately. “
Cryptocurrency has become a unit of commerce globally over the years, so the reason for the decision of the Central Bank to close accounts that transact in cryptocurrencies is still unclear.
In the recent past, trading in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies has skyrocketed as the global economy becomes increasingly volatile.
In 2020, crypto marketplace Paxful reported that Nigeria had the world’s second-largest Bitcoin by trading volume. In the last five years, Nigerians have traded 60,215 Bitcoins, or more than $566 million USD, it was reported.