Bitcoin’s First African Adopter Faces Backlash From Central Bank

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A regional central bank is clamping down on Bitcoin transactions after the Central African Republic adopted the cryptocurrency as legal tender without consulting its monetary authority, Bloomberg News reported. The Bank of Central African States, which already doesn’t recognize cryptocurrencies, is now preventing all lenders from partnering with payment platforms that transact in digital currencies or from recognizing them as an asset. Lenders must also monitor any indirect attempt by their customers to make cryptocurrency transactions so authorities can take action, according to a May 6 note to banks sent to journalists on Friday. “It is necessary to take preventive measures to ensure financial stability and protect client deposits within the region,” Central Bank Governor Abbas Mahamat Tolli said in the note. The regulator is toughening its stance after accusing the Central African Republic of breaking a decades-old agreement to share a common currency with five of its neighbors when it adopted Bitcoin last month. Cameroon, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, the Republic of Congo and the Central African Republic all use one of two variations of the CFA Franc. Read more.