Nigeria has recently directed its telecommunication companies to block access to the websites of prominent cryptocurrency firms, including Binance, OctaFX, and Coinbase. This move comes just months after the Central Bank of Nigeria lifted its ban on crypto transactions, highlighting the country’s volatile regulatory environment for digital assets.

Key Takeaways

  • Nigeria has instructed telecom firms to block access to major crypto platforms like Binance, OctaFX, and Coinbase.
  • The move aims to curb currency speculation activities within the country.
  • The Central Bank of Nigeria had lifted a previous ban on crypto transactions in December 2023.
  • The decision has sparked significant backlash from the Nigerian crypto community.
  • Binance and other firms are working to ensure compliance with local regulations.

Nigeria’s Regulatory U-Turn

In a surprising turn of events, Nigeria has directed its telecommunication companies to block access to the websites of prominent cryptocurrency firms. This decision follows the Central Bank of Nigeria’s policy shift in December 2023, which saw the lifting of a previous ban on crypto transactions. The recent move aims to curb currency speculation activities within the country, with Binance notably stating that its platform is not intended for currency pricing.

Government’s Stance on Crypto

The Nigerian government has instructed telecommunication firms to restrict access to these crypto platforms due to concerns over currency speculation. President Bola Tinubu’s Special Adviser on Information and Strategy, Mr. Bayo Onanuga, accused crypto exchanges of manipulating the naira, leading to its continued fall in the forex market. He urged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to take quick action against these platforms.

Impact on the Nigerian Crypto Community

Nigerians have taken to social media platforms to express their dismay over the government’s decision. With concerns mounting over the decline of the naira against the dollar, many are skeptical about the efficacy of the government’s measures in addressing underlying economic issues. The potential blockade of online platforms like Binance raises questions about the accessibility of digital assets in Nigeria and the resilience of the country’s crypto community.

Binance’s Response

In response to user complaints about the inability to purchase dollars on the platform, Binance emphasized its commitment to a market-driven and transparent environment. The platform clarified that it had paused transactions to prevent price suppression, denying allegations of currency speculation thriving on its platform. Binance has reiterated its engagement with local authorities and regulators to ensure compliance with evolving cryptocurrency regulations.

Global Context

The latest legal challenges of Binance in Nigeria follow a recent ban in India. The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of India issued notices to Binance and other firms for allegedly operating illegally through offshore entities. This development highlights the ongoing regulatory scrutiny faced by cryptocurrency platforms worldwide, signaling potential hurdles for their operations and further complicating the regulatory landscape.


Despite the regulatory challenges, Nigeria’s crypto enthusiasts remain resilient, exploring alternative avenues to engage with digital assets. However, the uncertainty surrounding the future of crypto exchanges in Nigeria underscores the importance of transparent dialogue between regulators, policymakers, and industry players.


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