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Monday, April 22, 2024

FG May Fine Binance $10bn For Illegal Transactions

The Federal Government says it may demand over $10bn from Binance as retribution for running “its illegal transactions” in Nigeria.

This serves as a move to salvage the value of the naira.

Special Adviser to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Information and Strategy, Bayo Onanuga, revealed this in a Friday morning interview with the British Broadcasting Corporation.

Onanuga alleged that Binance profited substantially from its illegal transactions in Nigeria while the nation suffered heavy losses.

He also argued that the company is neither registered in Nigeria nor has any presence in the country, adding that some users leveraged the platform to arbitrarily determine dollar-naira rates which saw a sharp decline in the value of the naira.

Onanuga stated, “I said compensation is being discussed and a fine is being contemplated. I used the word ‘May’.”

READ ALSO: FG Arrests Binance Officials Amid Cryptocurrency Clampdown

According to him, the cryptocurrency platform is causing massive losses for “fixing exchange rates.”

“The platform fixes the exchange rate for the country and it is an illegal rate. The CBN is the only authority that can fix the exchange rate for the country.

“Binance platform harbours people who fix the exchange rate which quickly affects the Nigerian economy for the time when Nigeria is trying to stabilize the economy.

“Binance staff cooperated with the government to provide information,” Onanuga added.

The spokesperson affirmed that the cryptocurrency platform is cooperating with the Nigerian government by providing useful information, and has since suspended naira-denominated transactions.

Also, the Office of the National Security Adviser confirmed that platform is under investigation by Nigerian authorities.

The development comes months after Binance pleaded guilty, agreeing to pay $4.3bn to settle criminal money laundering charges levied by the U.S. Department of Justice.

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