Reps Summon Binance CEO Over Alleged Money Laundering, Terrorism Financing

The Federal House of Representatives Committee on Financial Crimes has taken action by summoning the Chief Executive of Binance Holding Limited, Richard Teng, over allegations of terrorism financing and money laundering.

The committee, chaired by Ginger Onwusibe, issued a seven-day ultimatum to Binance Holdings LTD., to appear before them on or before March 4, 2024.

Binance, an online exchange platform for cryptocurrency trading, has come under scrutiny after being flagged by the Central Bank of Nigeria for its alleged involvement in money laundering activities.

Onwusibe emphasized that failure to comply with the summon will compel the committee to invoke its constitutional powers to take appropriate measures.

He expressed disappointment over the refusal of Binance Holding Limited’s Chief Executive, Richard Teng, to appear before the committee despite several invitations.

The committee had previously summoned the Managing Director of Binance through a letter dated December 12, 2023, requesting a hearing on December 18, 2023. The continued disregard for the committee’s invitations raises concerns about compliance with existing laws governing business and financial operations in the country.

Onwusibe, while restating the resolve of the committee to fight financial crimes maintained that “the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria has empowered us to protect Nigerians from financial crimes, especially by foreign companies.

“We also have to protect and defend the country’s finances, especially now that the country is nose-diving into recession. The allegations of terrorism financing, money laundering and tax evasion amongst others leveled against Binance are damning enough.”

“At this material time, we need all the tax dollars and to block the leaks and channels to financing terror.”

He added, “It is also our duty to do everything in our power to protect Nigerian investors from predatory firms, and no distraction and manipulation can stop us.”

“You cannot run a company with over 10 million Nigerians on your platform without paying tax and having a physical office where Nigerians can lodge their complaints when they experience any challenge with your service. The era of exploitation is over and all culprits must be held accountable.”