Bitcoin has been rejected in Kenya. The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) issued an outright rejection and caution its citizens against using the virtual currency.
In a statement published on its website Central Bank of Kenya said “No protection exists in the event that the platform that exchanges or holds the virtual currency fails or goes out of business,”
The change follows legal proceedings in Nairobi where a judge ruled in favor of Safaricom against two companies enabling transactions via bitcoin. The two companies – Lipisha Consortium and Bitpesa had gone to court to contest Safaricom’s decision to suspend an agreement that allowed Bitpesa to be used as payment means.
Safaricom, called for Bitpesa to be cleared by Central Bank of Kenya first before continuing running on its network.
Kenya now joins countries like China, India, Bangladesh, Vietnam and Iceland in banning Bitcoin in their nations.
In the US, UK and Australia Bitcoin is thriving, not as a legal tender but as a Money Service Business.
Local tech gurus seem to favor virtual currencies, on one of the discussions Ngigi Waithaka said “What is MPesa? It’s a Virtual Currency that has a 1:1 Mapping with the Kenya Shilling. That’s why when I send you MPesa, you don’t receive a legal tender, but you know you can convert it to KES at a rate of 1:1 minus the small charges.”