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Nigeria’s central bank not discouraging people from trading crypto, says governor

The governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria has seemingly softened his stance on crypto for individuals, if not banks.
Godwin Emefiele, governor of Nigeria’s central bank which previously banned banks from servicing crypto exchanges, has reportedly clarified the bank’s position on the use of cryptocurrencies in the country.According to local news outlet TodayNG, Central Bank of Nigeria, or CBN, deputy governor Adamu Lamtek said on behalf of Emefiele that the bank had not banned Nigerian residents from buying, trading, or selling crypto, but “[protected] the banking sector from the activities of cryptocurrencies.” Lamtek spoke at a seminar for the Finance Correspondents and Business Editors in the capital, Abuja.“The CBN did not place restrictions from use of cryptocurrencies and we are not discouraging people from trading in it,” said Emefiele. “What we have just done was to prohibit transactions on cryptocurrencies in the banking sector.”The statement follows the CBN announcing last month in a circular that it had placed a ban on all regulated financial institutions from providing services to crypto exchanges in the country. The ban directed all commercial banks to close accounts belonging to crypto exchanges and other businesses transacting in cryptocurrencies in Nigeria, warning of “severe regulatory sanctions” for any institution in breach of the rule. Some account holders at Nigeria’s Access Bank have already reported their accounts have been closed.Emefiele previously referred to cryptocurrencies as “not legitimate money” with no place in Nigeria’s monetary system. The governor said at …
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