Nigerian Court Mandates Binance to Reveal All User Information

The anti-graft agency’s attorney argued in the request that Binance’s operations in Nigeria involve aspects of illegal activity.

An order from a Nigerian High Court requires Binance Holdings’ operators to give the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) complete information about any Nigerian trading on their platform.

The directive was provided in an interim ruling issued by Justice Emeka Nwite on February 29, in response to an ex parte motion brought by the EFCC against the cryptocurrency trading platform Binance, according to local news source Sahara Reporters.

An ex parte motion is one in which there is only one party present and no advance notice of the motion is given to the defense, thus they are unable to raise any objections.

Ekele Iheanacho, the attorney for the anti-graft agency, said in the motion that Binance’s operations in Nigeria involve aspects of criminal activity.

The EFCC Act of 2004 and the Money Laundering (Prevention and Prohibition) Act of 2022 (as amended) both require the reporting of suspicious transactions to the appropriate authorities and impose penalties for noncompliance. This assumption is in violation of both of these laws.

EFCC agent Hamma Bello, in an affidavit, said that the Commission must wrap up its investigation following information about potential money laundering and terrorism funding connected to the Binance cryptocurrency exchange.

According to Bello, the EFCC team found users utilizing the cryptocurrency platform for illicit purposes like price discovery, confirmation, and market manipulation after receiving the intelligence. These actions caused major distortions in the foreign exchange market and further depreciated the naira in relation to other currencies.

According to the commission, Binance operators were informed about the negative impact of these operations on the Nigerian economy, which prompted a request to remove the naira from the trading site.

The CEO of Flincap, a liquidity platform for cryptocurrency exchanges, Nathaniel Luz, stated in an interview with Cointelegraph that while the Nigerian government benefits from this court order, a roundtable discussion about the matter would be the best course of action between Binance and the Nigerian government.

Presidential advisor on information and strategy Bayo Onanuga claimed that Binance and other cryptocurrency platforms have manipulated the naira, causing a sharp drop in the value of the country’s fiat currency. The official recommended prohibiting websites such as Binance within the nation.

Over the past few years, Nigeria’s cryptocurrency economy has grown at one of the quickest rates in the world. When it comes to the adoption of cryptocurrencies in 2023, it is also the second-biggest economy globally.

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