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Fidelity, Stanbic & FCMB bank MD's.

Three Nigerian financial institutions, has been fined various sums by the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, for facilitating illegal crypto businesses in Nigeria.

They are, First City Monument Bank, FCMB, Fidelity Bank, and Stanbic IBTC Bank and they are fined separately.

“Precious Eze’s Blog” reports that the Central Bank of Nigeria has fined First City Monument Bank (FCMB), Fidelity Bank Plc and Stanbic IBTC a sum of whopping N514 million, with the understanding that fined because they failed to comply with regulations prohibiting customers from transacting in cryptocurrencies.

This pushes the total fines for contravening the CBN circular on cryptocurrency to a massive N1.315 billion for 6 other Nigerian banks, as reports say that the apex bank had earlier fined three Nigerian commercial banks a total of N800 million for the same purpose.

First City Monument Bank (FCMB) was also fined N400 million by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) over its failure to close four accounts of customers said to be involved in cryptocurrency.

Fidelity Bank Plc received a sanction of N14.28 million for cryptocurrency infractions, the bank said in its 2021 audited financial statement.

CBN penalized Stanbic IBTC Bank, the local unit of Standard Bank Group Ltd., N200 million for two accounts allegedly used for crypto transactions.

The CBN had issued a circular on the 5th of February 2021, warning and reminding local financial institutions against conducting crypto transactions or enabling payments for crypto exchanges, asking them to close the accounts of anyone participating in or operating cryptocurrency exchanges in Nigeria immediately, with violations of the CBN directive resulted in a loss of N1.314 billion for 6 Nigerian banks.

The CBN had ignored pushback against its crypto regulation and has advised Nigerians to adopt its CBDC, the eNaira.

It said that the Chief Executive Officer, Stanbic IBTC, Wole Adeniyi, during an investor conference call in Lagos on Tuesday revealed that his bank was fined N200m ($478,595) for two accounts alleged to have been used for crypto transactions. 

Adeniyi said that while Stanbic IBTC followed the apex bank’s directive, the transactions it was sanctioned for might have passed through its system undetected, noting that the CBN was able to detect the relevant transactions using an “advanced capability” that Nigerian banks don’t have access to, and they’ve asked the apex bank to share the technology.

“It doesn’t seem that they are going to entertain a refund, but they are now sharing intelligence with us to be able to kind of deter clients,” he added.


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