The Central Bank of Nigeria, via the serving governor, Godwin Emefiele, has defended its ban of digital currencies in the country via a press conference sitting hosting the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions, ICT and Cybercrime.
The CBN in close partnership with Securities and Exchange Commission revealed that the ban was imposed in the best interest of citizens, as it protects them from falling risk to foreign-based fraudsters, money launderers and currency speculator.
The governor stated that the digital currency is “money that is created out of thin air in an electronic dark world,” which is the “reason virtually all regulators in the world do not recognise it. “
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In full quotes he said,
“Cryptocurrency is generally regarded as an electronic or digital currency that is issued by largely unknown, unregulated elements using computer codes that are basically meant to encrypt or hide information about both the transactions and the operators. And in a sense, it is money that is created out of thin air.
“Put another way, cryptocurrency is used to describe the activities of players in an electronic dark world where transactions are extremely opaque, they are black, they are not visible, and they are not transparent.
” In another parlance, these are people who deal in transactions that not only do not want a trail, but indeed by its nature cannot be trailed.
“I’m sure that these definitions alone are scary enough to create anxiety for any regulator or Central bank or fed in any part of the world, and that is the reason virtually all regulators in the world do not recognise it.
“Since many Nigerians delved into its usage, we have been studying its development.”
The CBN had maintained a similar stance when financial institutions were first restricted from involvement in any sort of transactions with the digital currency in early February,
“Due to the fact that cryptocurrencies are largely speculative, anonymous and untraceable they are increasingly being used for money laundering, terrorism financing and other criminal activities.”
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