An unpleasant incident occurred at the local offices of the Nigeria-based crypto trading platform AAX.
Reportedly, the firm’s members made forced entry into the office premises, hurled slogans against AAX’s management, and beat up employees.
This is because the exchange has paused the withdrawal access for Nigerian investors since mid-November. The investors unhappy with the exchange’s action have started taking matters into their own hands.
While the main characters are out of the picture and have fled the scene, it is the employees who are facing the backlash. The workers at the exchange had to face the wrath of the angry investors in Nigeria.
Unhappy Customers of Nigerian AAX
Atom Asset Exchange, widely recognized as ‘AAX’, is a Nigerian crypto platform having office premises in multiple cities, including Lagos.
AAX’s branch office in Lagos was stormed by angry and unhappy customers when the firm suspended withdrawals temporarily on 12th November.
Since 12th November, the withdrawal has been in place and customers are concerned about when they shall be resumed.
Physical Assault of AAX’s Workers
For staging their protests against withdrawal suspension, customers gathered outside the Lagos premises of AAX. The customers were raising a demand that withdrawal should be reinstated immediately or there shall be consequences.
However, the crowd turned violent and made forced entry into the premises.
In the process, angry customers not only damaged the property but also beat up a number of AAX employees. Several employees of AAX were reportedly taken hostage by mobs that questioned them while beating them.
As per media reports, the unpleasant incident was covered by the local media outlets in Nigeria on 2nd December. However, the news story did not make mention the exact date on which date the incident really happened.
It seems as if the incident happened prior to 28th November which is certain because of the intervention by Stakeholders in the Blockchain Technology Association of Nigeria (SIBAN).
SIBAN reportedly issued a public notice on 28th November appealing to AAX members to immediately refrain from manhandling and victimizing AAX’s employees.
It was stated in SIBAN’s public notice that the Association condemns the actions of AAX users who took the law into their hands.
Notice added further that AAX workers are not only innocent but had been brought into this situation for no fault of theirs.
AAX hails from the Hong Kong and is also headquartered therein. However, the exchange expanded its business in several locations, including Nigeria.
As per SIBAN’s notice, it could be seen that AAX’s headquarter is no longer communicating with its Nigerian subsidy.
AAX Users Claim They Hadn’t Been Informed
In its warning to AAX founders, SIBAN warned them that the firm was under an obligation to take its users into confidence. It added that violence could have been avoided if AAX’s management had fulfilled its duties towards clients.
According to SIBAN, the angry mob was agitated against the suspension of withdrawal without any prior intimation. The association noticed that there is a communication gap between AAX’s management and users.
SIBAN insisted that AAX’s management must restore users’ confidence by devising a robust and effective policy for closing the communication gap.
AAX’s Last Intimation to Users
It may further be noticed that AAX initiated suspension of withdrawal on 11th November and promised to keep the users updated.
The last update, AAX did was on 18th November, and thereafter no further updates which culminated in the users’ frustration.
To date i.e. 5th December 2022, there had been no update from AAX’s side in an effort to ease up the users’ frustration.
Meanwhile, a huge number of complaints have been lodged by unhappy AAX customers before the local law enforcement agencies.
Users believe that they have been defrauded and the exchange had targeted them for an ‘exit scam’. It could be true because AXX Nigeria’s VP had recently resigned on the pretext that public trust had been breached.