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CBN Bans Opay, Moniepoint, Kuda From Opening New Accounts In New Move Against Crypto Trading



In a move to curb money laundering activities and stem the recent decline in the value of the naira, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has imposed a ban on several microfinance banks, including Moniepoint, Opay, and Kuda, from opening new accounts and accepting new customers.

This decision comes after allegations that these financial institutions were being used to funnel cryptocurrency and manipulate the naira’s value.

According to sources familiar with the matter, the CBN deemed the new-account ban necessary to prevent further financial irregularities, which have seen the naira plummet to N1350 against the dollar as of Monday evening. This regression comes after the Nigerian currency had made a steady climb to N950 in early April.

Moniepoint, one of the affected microfinance banks, has notified intending customers of the temporary pause in new sign-ups on its platform. In a message on its platform, the bank apologized for any inconvenience this may cause.

This development follows a similar crackdown by the CBN and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Binance, a cryptocurrency exchange platform, in February. The authorities detained Binance executives, including Tigran Gambaryan, a U.S. citizen, and British-Kenyan Nadeem Anjarwalla, over accusations of naira manipulation. The Nigerian government demanded that Binance release the names of its top 100 users and their transactions to negotiate the release of the detained executives.

The CBN ban on new accounts by Opay and other fintechs is seen as a proactive measure to protect the integrity of the Nigerian financial system and prevent further economic instability. As the investigation continues, affected customers and stakeholders are advised to comply with the regulatory directives to ensure a swift resolution.
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