Babangida Ibrahim, who is the chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Capital Market and Institutions, has revealed that the house would soon enact a bill that will make it possible for anyone in Nigeria to utilize digital currencies, as reported by a Nigerian local media outlet.
“Like I said earlier during the second reading, we need an efficient and vibrant capital market in Nigeria. For us to do that, we have to be up to date with global practices.”
According to the article, if the Investments and Securities Act 2007 (Amendment) Bill is passed and signed into law, it would also enable the local Securities and Exchange Commission to recognize bitcoin and other virtual currencies as investment capital.
Furthermore, the proposed legislation would specify the responsibilities of the SEC and the Central Bank of Nigeria in regards to digital currency regulation. On Wednesday, Ibrahim had submitted his findings on proposals that would restructure the financial sector.
In 2020, the CBN mandated that all cryptocurrency exchanges be shut down and all associated accounts closed. The country’s central bank made it clear back then that buying and selling cryptocurrencies as well as processing payments using them are against the law.
“When it comes to digital currencies, they have different names and it depends on the jurisdiction. These currencies… They don’t have boundaries. You can stay here in Nigeria and invest in the United States, Canada or anywhere.”
Even yet, Ibrahim has been very clear that they are not attempting to have the ban lifted; rather, they are investigating the legality of their business in Nigeria, including what is and is not allowed by law. The CBN is responsible for overseeing the financial markets, whereas the SEC is in charge of the stock exchange.
Moreover, evidenced by a significant increase in the popularity of the search phrase “how to buy bitcoin” in Nigeria over the last five years, it’s apparent that Bitcoin is gaining traction in the country.