The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, has asked the National Assembly to come up with legislation that would regulate cryptocurrency trading to stop operators from using it to perpetrate heinous crimes.
The anti-graft agency lamented that kidnappers, bandits now use the medium to carry out high profile crimes like money laundering and payment of ransom for kidnappers.
The Chairman of ICPC, Prof.Bolaji Owasanoye, stated this during the opening ceremony of a two-day capacity building retreat with the National Assembly and ICPC Board/committee directors themed, “Corruption, IFFS and financing for national development,” which was held on Tuesday at Watbridge hotels and suites Uyo, Akwa Ibom.
He said the gaps in the law and absence of regulatory framework have emboldened the perpetrators of these crimes to swindle unsuspecting members of the public as well as engage in illicit financial flow.
“There is a need for regulatory intervention in cryptocurrency trading. Some people have used digital currency and assets to commit huge corruption, money laundry and terrorism financing.
“Corruption in digital assets are not easily traceable for instance if somebody steals billions of Naira and converts it quickly into cryptocurrency, it’s almost impossible to trace it.
Owasanoye explained that the retreat was organised by the commission to enable it to interface with the lawmakers and intimate them on some of the challenges facing the commission as well as update them on its achievements.
Also speaking, Chairman, House Committee on Anti-corruption, Hon Garba Shehu said the House has made the fight against corruption one of its critical components adding that the House would partner with ICPC to advance the fight against corruption.
“We are ready to support and assist the Commission in its onerous task of fighting graft and we are encouraging them to beam their searchlight on private individuals and companies just as they did in the public sector.” He said