Staff at crypto exchange AAX have reportedly been attacked by customers in Lagos, Nigeria. That’s not cool, but suddenly halting withdrawals is a recipe for, well, extreme disgruntlement.

Crypto lending platforms and exchanges freezing customer funds almost seems par for the course at the moment in the wake of the FTX collapse and subsequent intensified “crypto contagion”. Angry mobs physically attacking them, though, is a whole ‘nother messed-up matter.

According to local reports across the weekend, Nigerian-based customers of the Hong Kong/global crypto exchange AAX “stormed the AAX Lagos offices” in a desperate search for their funds, demanding their money while “beating up the staff available”.

The Nigerian Blockchain Technology Association Stakeholders (SiBAN) responded to the violence via an official statement:

“We appeal to and discourage any dissatisfied or angry user or investor from harassing or victimizing the AAX Country Manager (Nigeria), other local staff members, and AAX ambassadors nationwide.

These persons are also facing the same situation as disgruntled users and investors. At the time of writing this notice, we are aware that communication between these persons and AAX headquarters has been equally strained at this time. We therefore appeal for understanding and patience from all Nigerian AAX users.”

AAX began halting customer withdrawals on November 14, claiming a glitch in a systems upgrade rather than any direct connection with the FTX fallout.

Here was a tweet from AAX vice president regarding the withdrawal suspension. “Bad timing” indeed.


Senator Ted Cruz bullish on Bitcoin

United States Republican Senator Ted Cruz has made it clear on many occasions that he’s a Bitcoin advocate. He just doubled down on his bullish thesis.

The outspoken Cruz was speaking at the Texas Blockchain Summit 2022 recently and reportedly pushed the case for the crypto industry as a whole in Texas, emphasising its potential to advance technological development as well as help America’s energy supply.

That last point might seem counter-intuitive to many, considering Bitcoin mining’s energy-chewing reputation. However, Cruz explained:

“The beauty of it [Bitcoin mining] is when you’ve got substantial investment, as we do in Texas and Bitcoin mining, when you have an extreme weather event, either extreme heat, which is frequent in the state of Texas or extreme cold, which sometimes happens here, Bitcoin mining can be shut off in a fraction of a second. Making that electricity immediately available to the grid to heat or cool people’s homes, to keep businesses running.

“That is an enormous reservoir of excess capacity that, I think, is very beneficial.”

Cruz clarified that he’s excited by the idea of capturing of flared gas that would otherwise be “lighting the horizon” in West Texas and harming the environment to be instead used to mine Bitcoin, “generating value”.


“I like Bitcoin because the government can’t control it,” said Cruz, also noting:

“I think Bitcoin means investment. It means opportunity. It means prosperity. It means financial independence. I also think the rise of Bitcoin mining in Texas has an enormous positive benefit for resiliency of the grid.”