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FG slams $10 billion fine on Binance

The Federal Government has slammed a $10 billion fine on the widely-used cryptocurrency trading platform, Binance. Bayo Onanuga, the Special Adviser on Information and Strategy…

The Federal Government has slammed a $10 billion fine on the widely-used cryptocurrency trading platform, Binance.

Bayo Onanuga, the Special Adviser on Information and Strategy to President Bola Tinubu, confirmed this to the BBC on Friday morning.

According to Onanuga, the substantial fine is imposed due to Binance’s illicit activities, significantly contributing to the devaluation of Nigeria’s currency, the naira, in recent times.

He highlighted that the platform sets an unauthorized exchange rate for the country, a prerogative exclusively held by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

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Onanuga emphasized that the actions of Binance, including harboring individuals responsible for manipulating exchange rates, have a swift and adverse impact on Nigeria’s economy during its efforts to stabilize.

While acknowledging Binance’s cooperation with the government by providing information, Onanuga expressed concerns about the platform’s potential to destabilize the Nigerian economy if left unchecked.

The President Bola Tinubu-led government has been intensifying efforts to curtail Binance’s operations within the country, leading to Binance’s removal of the naira from its peer-to-peer feature, known as the P2P market.

This feature enables users to transact without intermediary involvement.

In connection with the government’s crackdown, two Binance employees were detained by the office of the National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu, in Abuja as part of an investigation into the cryptocurrency exchange’s operations in Nigeria. The government’s actions aim to curb naira speculation and address the declining value of the currency by taking decisive measures against cryptocurrency exchanges.

During a recent Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Governor Olayemi Cardoso disclosed that an astounding $26 billion had passed through Binance Nigeria from unidentified sources and users within a year.

The CBN boss expressed concerns about suspicious financial flows and illicit activities associated with cryptocurrency entities like Binance.

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