Ghana's SEC Tells Citizens Not to Deal With Crypto Companies

Ghana’s Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued another warning to citizens about cryptocurrency, but seemingly remains open to the concept in the midst of conducting research into the industry.

After some customers of a cryptocurrency company called Global Coin Community Help (GCCH) asked the regulator to step in and assist with retrieving locked-up money, the SEC’s Deputy Director General, Paul Ababio, responded to the inquiries saying Ghanaians should “desist from engaging in these crypto entities.” Ababio warned people would be “on your own” if they choose to do so, according to Citi News.

Cryptocurrency is not currently accepted as legal tender in the African country and the SEC has no regulatory oversight over the industry.

Unhappy Customers Petitioning The State

Media outlets reported that Global Coin Community Help stole the deposits of at least 110,000 customers in 2018. The Bank Of Ghana cautioned citizens to be wary of GCCH in December 2018.  

Some customers have been petitioning various government agencies in an attempt to get assistance. Aside from the SEC, people have demanded action from the Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO) and the Criminal Investigations Department (CID).

While the EOCO did question two company directors after launching an investigation in 2018, some people said the Office is taking too much time with its investigations.

One GCCH customer remarked how people are asking government entities for help because “things wouldn’t have gone this far” if security agencies were “doing their work well.”

Ghana’s SEC Keeps An Open Mind

While Ababio issued a strong warning to those looking to deal with cryptocurrency companies, he did indicate the SEC was still welcoming any input about how crypto should be handled in Ghana.  

Ghana Web reported cryptocurrency could be accepted as legal tender down the road since the SEC is trying to figure out licensing frameworks.

Ababio also indicated the SEC had started investigations into three cryptocurrency companies and said it would continue to carry out actions that would go after firms “illegally operating in the investment space.”