05-03-2023 icon

Nigerian Government Formally Legalizes Blockchain

By Lucy Adegbe

The Nigeria Federal Executive Council has approved the National Policy on Blockchain drafted by the Federal Ministry of Communications & Digital Economy, paving the way for the formal use of blockchain technology in the country.

In a May 2 tweet, the special assistant to the President on digital and new media, Tolu Ogunlesi, said relevant agencies would be working to develop appropriate regulatory frameworks. He said the government established a steering committee led by the National Information and Technology Development Agency to oversee policy implementation.

However, the approved policy is not yet public. Ogunlesi promised that this would be provided soon.

Many Nigerians have welcomed the news of the approval even without seeing the policy document. Some have also questioned if the new policy legalizes crypto usage in the country.

In 2021, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) prohibited financial institutions from providing their services for crypto-related transactions.

Since then, the CBN has yet to clarify its stance towards the industry. However, that has not stopped cryptocurrency adoption — Chainalysis ranked Nigeria in the top 20 of its 2022 Global Crypto Adoption Index.