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Nigeria Imposes $10 Billion Fine on Binance Amid Forex Crisis

Nigeria Imposes $10 Billion Fine on Binance Amid Forex Crisis

The Nigerian government has imposed a hefty $10 billion fine on the cryptocurrency trading platform Binance, alleging its involvement in exacerbating the country’s forex crisis.

Bayo Onanuga, special adviser to President Bola Tinubu on information and strategy, revealed the fine in an interview with the BBC on Friday morning.

According to Onanuga, Binance has profited significantly from its purported “illegal transactions” in Nigeria while the nation has incurred substantial losses.

He stated that Binance is not registered in Nigeria and lacks a physical presence in the country. Allegedly, individuals have utilized the platform to manipulate dollar-naira exchange rates, adversely affecting the value of the local currency.

Onanuga further noted that Binance has been cooperating with the Nigerian government by providing information and has already suspended naira-related transactions on its platform.

Binance Accused of Exchange Rate Manipulation

Highlighting the negative impacts of Binance’s operations in Nigeria, Onanuga stated:

“The platform dictates exchange rates in Nigeria, which is unlawful. The Central Bank of Nigeria is the sole authority empowered to set the exchange rate for Nigeria.
“Binance accommodates individuals who manipulate exchange rates, resulting in severe consequences for the country during a time when the government is striving to stabilize the economy.”
He added that Binance’s activities have contributed to the surge in foreign exchange rates through currency speculation, leading to a nearly 70% depreciation in the value of the Naira in recent months.

Binance under investigation

Earlier on Friday, the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) confirmed that the crypto exchange platform is being investigated by the Nigerian authorities. In its first official confirmation of the clampdown efforts on the activities of Binance and other crypto platforms, a top official of the ONSA told Premium Times that the security adviser’s office is coordinating an interagency investigation into the operations of Binance.

“I am confirming that the office of the national security adviser, as part of ongoing operations in the foreign exchange market with the CBN and other law enforcement and security agencies, is coordinating an interagency investigation into the operations of Binance,” the paper quoted Zakari Mijinyawa, head of Strategic Communication at the Office of the National Security Adviser.

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