- Nigeria’s ban on cash withdrawals from government accounts will take effect less than a week after the country holds presidential elections next month.
- With millions of Nigerians distraught by extreme poverty, Bitcoin and Cardano have been offering hope to those who are excluded from the banking industry.
Following the successful rollout of the digital Naira, the Nigerian government wishes to push its economy towards crypto payments. According to the executive director of the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit, Modibbo Tukur, cash withdrawals from government accounts will be suspended from March 1. Tukur indicated that the move is in line with the government’s need to tackle illicit activities from the top down. As such, cash withdrawals from government accounts will be flagged for money laundering investigations.
“On March 1, if there is a cash withdrawal from a government account, even if it is a naira, we are going to launch investigations for money laundering and corruption,” he told reporters.
The country has been suffering from terrorist extremists dubbed Boko Haram, and now wants to cut off their financial support by digitizing the economy.
Interestingly, the Central Bank of Nigeria limited weekly over-the-counter cash withdrawals to 100,000 naira ($225) for individuals and 500,000 naira ($1,124) for businesses early last month. In addition, the country limited ATM withdrawals to $45 per day, with denominations of 1,000 naira ($2.25) and 500 naira ($1.10) unavailable in cash vending machines from January.
With all the limitations in place, the president and the central bank can authorize exceptions for excessive cash withdrawals from ATMs.
“Imposing the restrictions will mitigate the risk of public servants being exposed to these crimes and will protect the financial system from continued abuse,” according to the guidelines published by the NFIU.
In particular, Nigeria’s ban on cash withdrawals from government accounts will take effect less than a week after the country holds presidential elections next month.
Nigeria Helps Bitcoin and Cardano Shine
While Nigeria is tackling corruption through a cash ban, Bitcoin and Cardano adoption in the country is expected to increase exponentially in the coming years. With millions of Nigerians distraught by extreme poverty, Bitcoin and Cardano have been offering hope to those who are excluded from the banking industry. Furthermore, Bitcoin and Cardano do not limit any Nigerian from transacting any amount of cash both locally and internationally.
Bitcoin and Cardano adoption in Nigeria has increased significantly in recent years fueled by the deteriorating economy. As of Friday, data from TradingView shows one dollar trading for 449 Nigerian Nairas.
The case is worse on cryptocurrency exchanges, which offer Naira exchanges at double the market price. For example, one USDT on the Remitano cryptocurrency exchange can fetch approximately 738.75 NGNR.
The Cardano ecosystem has been working closely with the Nigerian market to drive adoption of Web3 on an individual level.
William Phelps, Adaverse Investment Manager was at the recently concluded @cyberchain_ng #Benin2022 conference call on Friday to reiterate Cardano’s mission in Africa to scale web 3 solutions via Adaverse. #start up #chain of blocks #cryptocurrency #Cardano #emurgo #Money pic.twitter.com/HSa45ljI4f
— Adaverse Accelerator (@Adaverse_Acc) July 25, 2022