Nigeria crypto groups set for legal showdown vs central bank’s bitcoin crackdown

Nigerian cryptocurrency organizations are prepared to sue the country’s central bank over a contentious regulatory decision to restrict crypto use and trade in the massive West African country.

The Central Bank of Nigeria’s decision, or policy, mandates traditional commercial lenders to unilaterally flag and shut down both individual and business accounts linked to bitcoin and other digital assets.

CBN tightened its decision earlier this month to target young Nigerians aged 18 to 30 years old, a cohort that is heavily involved in cryptocurrency. The central bank’s measures have been dubbed “financial terrorism with official backing” by critics.

‘The law does not support a crypto crackdown’

On Nov. 22, the Blockchain Industry Coordinating Committee of Nigeria (Biccon), an umbrella organization comprising the country’s three largest crypto organizations, issued a warning to the central bank, claiming that its decision was not justified by any current Nigerian regulations.

Senator Ihenyen, Biccon’s general secretary, called on all individuals harmed by the central bank’s decision to sue both the CBN and the legacy bankers who supported it in a statement shared with BeInCrypto.

He slammed traditional banking institutions, calling their “questionable conduct” in canceling crypto-related accounts without due process “reprehensible.”

Several cryptocurrency aficionados have lost access to their bank accounts as a result of them being closed or blocked.

Local banks prohibited

In the statement, Ihenyen stated, “Affected persons and companies are urged to seek legal assistance for the aim of examining the unique circumstances of their cases.”

“Legal action should be sought in our courts where a person’s right has been infringed upon without legal foundation,” he continued.

In February, the Nigerian central bank issued a ban on cryptocurrencies, prohibiting local banks from cooperating with digital asset enterprises.

It then unveiled e-naira, its central bank digital currency (CBDC), on Oct. 25, with the goal of boosting Nigeria’s gross domestic product by up to $29 billion over the next decade. The central bank, which has a stranglehold on monetary policy, wants the e-naira to flourish.

 

Image courtesy of Cointelegraph News/YouTube

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