Tinubu Govt Obtains Court Order To Track Nigerians Transacting On Binance

Adoga Stephen By Adoga Stephen - Editor-In-Chief
3 Min Read

The Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered Binance Holdings Limited to provide the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) with detailed information about all Nigerian traders on its platform.

This order was issued in response to an ex parte motion filed by the EFCC seeking information on Nigerian traders using Binance.

The lawsuit, identified as FHC/ABJ/CS/259/2024 and dated February 29, was filed by the EFCC under various sections of the Economic and Financial Crimes Establishment Act, 2004, and the Money Laundering (Prevention and Prohibition) Act, 2022 (as amended).

In an affidavit supporting the motion, EFCC operative Hamma Bello stated that the commission’s Special Investigation Team, located in the Office of the National Security Adviser, received intelligence indicating that money laundering and terrorism financing activities were being conducted on Binance.

He said, “On receipt of the Intelligence, the team began an investigation by conducting surveillance of the activities of the platform.

“The team uncovered users who have been using the platform for price discovery, confirmation and market manipulation which has caused tremendous distortions in the market, resulting in the naira losing its value against other currencies.

“The damage the platform has caused was clearly explained to the operators of the platform and they were requested to delist the Naira and avail the ONSA of the activities of the Nigerians on their platform.

“The information afforded to the team by Binance shows trading volume from Nigeria in 2023 alone stood at $21.6bn.”

Bello mentioned that the data requested would assist the commission in finalizing its investigation. In the official copy of the ruling, delivered on February 29 but seen by journalists on Monday, Justice Emeka Nwite approved the interim order.

He said, “The applicant’s application dated and filed 29th February 2024, is hereby granted as prayed.

“That an order of this honourable court is hereby made directing the operators of Binance to provide the commission with comprehensive data/information relating to all persons from Nigeria trading on its platform.”

Binance is an online platform where users can trade cryptocurrencies.

The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Olayemi Cardoso, revealed during a press briefing after the 293rd meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee in Abuja in February that over $26 billion had been funneled through Binance without any trace in the past year.

Financial Times reported on February 28 that two company executives were arrested and detained upon arrival in the country due to a ban on their website.

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By Adoga Stephen Editor-In-Chief
Stephen studied Mass Communication at the Lagos State Polytechnic, Ikorodu (now Lagos State University of Science and Technology), where he acquired requisite training for the practice of journalism. He loves the media, and his interest mostly lies in print medium, where his creative writing skill makes him a perfect fit.