Following the resolution of the Caretaker Committee of Stakeholders in Blockchain Technology Association of Nigeria (SiBAN) at a recent meeting, the Vice Chairperson (Policy & Regulations) has released its subcommittee’s 3 Action Steps. The 3 Action Steps are as follows:
1. Introduction of SiBAN to Law Enforcement Agencies and Regulators:
Introduce SiBAN to law enforcement agencies such as EFCC and the Nigeria Police about the establishment and objectives of SiBAN towards forging a healthy and collaborative relationship with them, thus protecting our members against illegal arrests and victimization. SiBAN will also be formally introduced to regulators such as CBN, SEC, and NDIC;
2. Introduction of ‘Register Your Business’ Campaign:
A number of platforms in the Blockchain and cryptocurrency space in the country are either not registered at all or not registered in Nigeria. To boost credibility in the space and reduce the rate at which scammers are appearing and disappearing in the space, we will campaign that Nigerian business in the space must register their businesses and also publish their RC numbers or BN numbers on their websites and publications as the case may be. Foreign firms that operate in Nigeria will be encouraged to also register in Nigeria;
3. Introduction of KYC/AML Campaign:
Advocate, prepare, and propose policies for Know Your Customer (KYC) and Anti-Money Laundering (AML) compliance for adoption by registered members of SiBAN who own or operate Blockchain and cryptocurrency businesses in Nigeria as minimum requirement towards improving consumer protection, boosting security, and supporting laws, public policies, and regulations. We will design a KYC/AML icon or emblem that platforms who adopt our KYC/AML policies or similar policies will have the right to place on their platforms.
In the words of Senator Ihenyen, the Vice Chairman (Policy & Regulations), “At policy and regulations level, we are very concerned about the need to boost the credibility of Blockchain and cryptocurrency platforms operating in the space. This will help improve consumer protection and investor confidence. As a body of stakeholders, our approach is a self-regulatory approach which we hope we help us sanize the space while also exploring collaborations with regulators. We believe that Blockchain and cryptocurrency present massive opportunity for economic growth. But we can’t make that happen if we fail to leverage on the technology at this nascent stage.”
The 3 Action Steps have been adopted by SiBAN and the Committee on Policy and Regulations are currently working on implementation.
Last month, SiBAN’s Committee on Projects had made an inquiry into the operations of two cryptocurrency platforms in the country and made interventions that raised hope that the Nigerian Blockchain and cryptocurrency space can be safer, better, and bigger.