Nigeria’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced Thursday it has put plans to regulate cryptocurrencies on hold in light of the central bank’s decision to ban them, according to a report by the Guardian Nigeria.
The regulatory body released a statement officially confirming any plans to regulate the cryptocurrencies are now on hold following a Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) directive ordering banks to close any accounts transacting with cryptocurrencies.
“For the purpose of admittance into the SEC regulatory incubation framework, the assessment of all persons and products affected by the CBN circular of Feb. 5, 2021, is hereby put on hold until such persons are able to operate bank accounts within the Nigerian banking system,” the SEC said in a statement seen by the publication.
The CBN letter which was signed by Bello Hassan, Director of Banking Supervision, said it was reminding regulated banking institutions that “dealing in cryptocurrencies or facilitating payments for cryptocurrency exchanges is prohibited” and any breaches of the order would face “severe regulatory sanctions.”
Despite the announcement made by CBN, the Nigerian cryptocurrency community has been largely undeterred, using peer-to-peer exchange platforms to continue trading.