For the next six months, the Central Bank of Nigeria has frozen the bank accounts of Nigerian fintech platforms Risevest, Bamboo, Trove, and Chaka.
These four platforms’ accounts will be frozen for the next six months in order to probe the dealings of online investment and trading platforms, where the majority of trading takes place.
Chief Micheal Kaase Aondoakaa, SAN, filed the motion on behalf of the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria to probe the financial activities of these four fintech companies in Nigeria.
The CBN alleged that Rise Vest Technologies Limited, Bamboo Systems Technology Limited, Chaka Technologies Limited and Trove Technologies Limited were complicit in operating without license as asset management companies “and utilizing FX sourced from the Nigerian FX market for purchasing foreign bonds/shares in contravention of the CBN circular referenced TED/FEM/FPC/GEN/01/012, dated July 01, 2015.”
The prosecutor informed Justice Ahmed Mohammed that the defendants’ foreign exchange operations were making the Naira weaker against the US dollar, necessitating the need to block 15 of their accounts for 180 days.
Notably, the Nigerian Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has granted all four companies affected by this case licenses to operate as digital platforms for buying and selling stocks.
In response to this news, Risevest’s CEO Eke Eleanya Urum and Bamboo took to Twitter (which is now banned) to assure Risevest users that trading will continue as usual and that the issue will be solved with the regulators.
So far, none of the companies involved have stepped forward to deny this claim. This action follows the CBN’s recent decision to prohibit the sale of foreign exchange (FX) to Bureau De Change (BDC) operators in the country, as well as a restriction on these platforms in April for not being duly registered.