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Binance confirms working with the Nigerian government to block dollar-naira exchange

Cyptocurrency giant, Binance, has said it is working with the Nigerian government to stamp out activities non-complaint with the country’s regulations on its platform. 

Binance disclosed this in an announcement on its “commitment to P2P users in Nigeria” on Tuesday, warning that “users behaving in a manipulative way will be removed from the platform.” 

“As industry leaders,” Binance said, “We are working hand in hand with local authorities, lawmakers, and regulators to ensure we act on non-compliance.’’ 

The crypto exchange platform further said it is “setting an upper limit for ads, filtering and removing bad ads, requiring and raising deposits for merchants posting ads as well as processes for actioning against any market manipulators.” 

On Tuesday, Binance disabled sell option for its Nigerian users, blocking them from selling fiat currency, USDT, on the platform. It also capped the buy option to $1802 for Nigerian users. 

It also disabled purchase of cryptocurrencies via P2P for its Nigerian users, leaving those who might want to sell their crypto assets such as Bitcoin, BNB, Ethereum via P2P stuck. 

This comes as another desperate move by the Tinubu-led government to stem naira freefall against the dollar. 

Sources close to the Nigerian government have recently been speaking of how cryptocurrency has provided a route for people to circumvent the country’s plan to increase dollar liquidity. 

“There is something they call Binance, these guys don’t do anything but speculate,” Ayo Oyalowo, a member of APC’s presidential campaign council told Channels TV on Tuesday evening, Feb. 20. 

“Just today alone, they have shifted the value of naira against the dollar from N1,700 to N1,800 within one hour.” 

Earlier on Tuesday, the National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu, directed law enforcement agencies to take firm measures against anyone engaged in foreign exchange market speculation. 

“In a concerted effort to safeguard Nigeria’s foreign exchange market and combat speculative activities, the Office of the National Security Adviser and the Central Bank of Nigeria are joining forces to address challenges impacting the nation’s economic stability,” a statement issued by Mr Ribadu’s office read. 

It added, “The CBN’s proactive measures to stabilise the foreign exchange market and stimulate economic activities have been commendable. However, the effectiveness of these initiatives is being undermined by the activities of speculators, both domestic and international, operating through various channels, thereby exacerbating the depreciation of the Nigerian naira.”

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