Africa’s nascent cryptocurrency enthusiasts and investors were shocked to learn that yet another boss of crypto exchange was claiming to have lost the password to a wallet.
Tawanda Kembo, the founder and chief executive officer of the once flourishing Golix crypto-exchange is said to be claiming to have lost the password for a cold wallet back in May 2018 which had 33 Bitcoin. This translates to just over US$250 000.
The password fiasco was confirmed by two separate sources who used to work for Golix, Zimbabwe’s first and at one time biggest crypto exchange.
Unfortunately, Kembo has proved rather elusive, as we have been trying to get in touch with him to get his side of the story.
To make the matter worse, the timing of the lost password seems rather convenient as it occured at a time when the majority of its customers where trying to retrieve their coins and withdraw their money from the exchange. This came about after the financial regulators at the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) ordered the exchange to be shut down for violating regulatory issues.
Golix tried to battle the regulators but ultimately lost the war and were forced to withdraw their court challenge. Golix is now being sued by the regulators for the legal costs that they incurred during the litigation.
Another source who worked at Golix revealed that the majority of the customers who kept their coins on the exchange were not refunded.
During the period that Golix was under fire from the authorities and when it was actually banned from trading, the exchange actually went on with its Initial Coin Offering (ICO). Golix launched its own token, the GLX token claiming that it wanted to launch other exchanges in other African countries namely South Africa, Kenya and Uganda. Part of its press statement at the time of the ICO said,
The GLX token, an Ethereum ERC-20 token, will be available for purchase from Monday 14 May 2018 on the Golix token sale website, tokensale.golix.com. Potential buyers can use their bitcoin (BTC) and/or ethereum (ETH) to buy the GLX token which has been priced at $0.05612 per GLX token.
Golix has been operational in Zimbabwe as an exchange for 3 years already and boasts of over 50,000 customers having transacted over US$20m to date. The funds raised will see them opening exchanges in more African countries as well as expanding their portfolio of services offered.
The total supply of GLX tokens will be 1,274,240,097 tokens, with fifty percent (637,120,049 tokens) available for sale during the token sale. The hard cap for the token sale has been set at a sale of the 637,120,049 tokens.
Golix did not reveal how much they raised at the ICO, but there are reports that the company raised millions of dollars with the figure ranging from US$2 million to just under US$10 million.
However, the exchange was not forthcoming with its figures and neither has it been forthcoming about how the money raised was used. According to publicly available information, the exchange does not seem to have opened any other exchanges in any other African countries is it claimed before the ICO.
The most worrying thing, however, about Golix is that it has gone silent and is not communicating anything to its customers. It’s Twitter social media handle was last updated in February while it has no Facebook page. Tawanda Kembo is not responding to messages and his phone is not going through. His Twitter account was last used in December 2018.
iHarare fears that due to Golix’s conduct, the authorities will crack down on cryptocurrencies and make it all but impossible for other exchanges to operate in the country. It will also give ammunition to those who are against cryptos to lobby their governments to pass stringent regulation or at worst ban crypto exchanges completely.
24-Hours after our post, Tawanda Kembo reached out exclusively to us to give his side of the story. You can read the response in the post below
Breaking News: Golix CEO Responds To Theft Accusations (EXCLUSIVE)