Countries like Nigeria, which are classified as emerging markets with weak economies, are seeing a huge surge in crypto activities.
As with the case in Nigeria, these activities are usually related to crypto companies and exchanges opening operations in the country and recording significant growth in trading volume. This time though, the news is coming from a local institution in the country accepting Bitcoin as payment.
The school authority and parents of students of New Oxford Science Academy, a privately owned secondary school in Kano metropolis, the capital city of a Nigerian state with the same name, have reportedly reached an agreement that school fees can be paid in cryptocurrencies.
The school’s principal Mr. Sabi’u Haruna told a local news outlet that the agreement was made to ease payments of school fees. He further noted that cryptocurrencies were winning the world over and gaining more acceptance, citing El Salvador’s adoption of cryptocurrencies as legal tender, he said: “We’ve decided to accept cryptocurrency as school fees because the world today is tilting towards the system. We believe one-day digital money will gain more acceptance than paper money.”
This development is an alarmingly bold step for a Nigerian institution to take, as the regulatory situation around cryptocurrencies in the country is still very uncertain.
Nigeria has previously been in the news for banning Bitcoin and cryptocurrency trading in the country. Though the Central Bank of Nigeria clarified the statement shortly after, saying it was not an outright ban, banks in the country are still barred from facilitating cryptocurrency-related transactions.
Notably, the development did not stop Nigerians from trading cryptocurrencies. If anything, the publicity afforded the asset class saw cryptocurrency trading surge in the country. Crypto exchanges operating in the country such as Paxful and Binance saw a surge in Peer-to-peer transactions in the country. Nigeria’s peer-to-peer trading volume for Bitcoin, which is being spearheaded by the youthful population, surpassed $99 million in the first quarter of 2021 according to UsefulTulips, making the country rank as the leading peer-to-peer market in Africa.
At the present time, the school’s decision, like the decision of exchanges and young Nigerians to continue using cryptocurrencies despite government crackdowns, is a reflection of their resilience and their belief in the asset’s value.
Conclusively, the future of cryptocurrency adoption in Nigeria seems to be brightening up. Following the futility of the banking ban on cryptocurrency transactions and the surge of P2P transactions, the Nigerian government seems to be revising its stance.
The Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation and the Central Bank of Nigeria have announced plans to adopt cryptocurrencies; committees have also been set up to look into the implementation of Blockchain technology in governmental insurance and finance.