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Two Binance executives arrested in Nigeria

Annyeonghaseyo,

Ogheneruemu from Techpoint here.

  • Bolt’s launch in Botswana
  • Binance senior executives’ arrest in Nigeria
  • Downtime on MTN Nigeria’s network

Bolt launches in Botswana 

Estonian ride-hailing company, Bolt is launching in Gaborone, Botswana’s capital. As part of the rollout, the company is waiving its usual 15-20% commission fee for drivers for six months and has onboarded 100 drivers so far.

Currently, inDrive — which launched in Botswana in 2019 — is the only ride-hailing company in the South African country and does not charge its drivers commission.

Although it was meant to be an introductory offer that lasted for six months (same as Bolt), the company said it’s entrance into new markets is done in stages and despite it being more than four years since launch it was still in it’s second phase as of September 2023.

Botswana is the 14th southern African market Bolt has expanded into. It has launched in Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Namibia in the last six months.

Head of Expansion, Global at Bolt, Laurent Koerge, said, “we are thrilled to introduce our services in Botswana. Our aim is to increase earnings for our drivers while fostering high demand through competitive pricing.” Canal+ eyes MultiChoice for $1.6b


Binance executives detained in Nigeria 

Binance logo

The Financial Times has confirmed the arrest of two Binance executives in Nigeria.

This comes on the heel of news of the crypto exchange halting naira to USDT/USDC transactions on its platform. Yesterday, Nigerian crypto platform, Onboard, paused naira to USDT/USDC settlement by 7 p.m. after sending several notifications to customers.

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Nigeria’s currency has experienced increasing volatility in the last few months after a series of policy changes made by the country’s central bank.

On Tuesday, February 27, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Olayemi Cardoso, said “$26 billion has passed through Binance Nigeria from sources and users we cannot identify.”

Currently, both Binance and Nigerian authorities are silent on the news of the arrest with no official statement from their ends.

Last week, we reported the CBN’s alleged plan to shutdown all crypto platforms in Nigeria.


MTN Nigeria’s downtime 

MTN's office

Yesterday, MTN Nigeria customers were unable to make calls or use their mobile data due to prolonged downtime on the telco’s network.

The telecom giant took to X (formerly Twitter) to explain that this was caused by multiple fibre cuts. However, it said that service had been restored to some regions as its engineers are working to resolve this issue.

The outage affected all regions of the country and the company said that the problem started at about 1:39 p.m. on Wednesday, February 28.

Fun fact: Fibre cuts are one of the most common causes of network outage and this article explains what causes them. In Nigeria, another is vandalism as Adia Sowho, MTN CMO explained in an interview with Techpoint Africa last year.

In perhaps unrelated news, yesterday for the deadline for telecom operators to block all lines not linked with a National Identification Number (NIN) as directed by the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC).

If you are Nigerian and haven’t linked your NIN, there’s a huge possibility you won’t be able to make calls and use mobile data as from today.


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  • Have you ever invested in a crowdfunding platform like Farmcrowdy before? If yes, kindly take a few minutes to answer 8-10 questions here.
  • Kenyan startups focused on embedded finance, future fintech, SME productivity tools, and content like local gaming and mobile advertising can apply for Safaricom’s Spark Accelerator programme. For more information, check this out.
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  • Application for the Meltwater Entrepreneurial School of Technology (MEST) Class of 2025 is now open. Check out the one-year, fully sponsored, graduate-level programme in tech entrepreneurship here before March 18, 2023.
  • Do you live in Nigeria and work with a local or foreign company? Whether it’s remotely, on-site, hybrid, full-time, part-time or as a freelancer, @TheIntelpoint is trying to understand the Nigerian workspace: how you work, and toxicity in the workspace among others. Please, fill out the questionnaire here.
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Have a productive Thursday!

Ogheneruemu Oneyibo for Techpoint Africa.

This post was originally published on this site

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