Buki Ogunsakin is a legal practitioner with a track record of excellence in Crypto, Nanotechnology, Drone, IoTs, and NFT consultation/management. Her journey into the Crypto space started in 2018 when a speaker at a Cybersecurity event she attended introduced participants to Blockchain technology.
In an exclusive interview with Technext, Buki, who is also the principal partner of BBO Solicitors shares her experience, journey and the inter-relatedness of law and crypto.
“Before then my core interest was in Cyberspace, Cyberlaw, and I had been studying the major players in the industry. However, Blockchain technology completely blew me away. The rest they say is history“, she told me.
Blockchain technology has various unique ways of charming newcomers and making them ardent apostles. In Buki’s case, she fell in love with the technology because she believed it would be a world-changer.
“First the fact that it is distributed and decentralised got me interested. Next, I found it particularly interesting that it is immutable and traceable. This I felt would be a massive game-changer, most especially for developing countries like Nigeria. I had thought web 1.0 and web 2.0 was global leveller but Blockchain takes opportunity and innovation to much greater levels. Thirdly, it introduced the ability to convert physical assets to digital assets. To comprehend and understand this is to realise that the world as we know it has completely changed.”– Buki Ogunsakin on choosing Blockchain technology.
Buki practices primarily in three areas of law – emerging technologies (crypto, NFTs, AI etc), data privacy, and cybersecurity.
About BBO Solicitors
Buki Ogunsakin is the Principal/ Head Satoshi of BBO Solicitors. An organization that offers a spectrum of legal services to individuals, corporations, institutions and NGOs in the crypto space.
She is also a Blockchain/Crypto/Smart Contract Researcher at Smart Contract Research Forum – a Canada-based forum that serves as a bridge between academia and industry.
“We (BBO Solicitors) provide legal services for organizations primarily in the tech ecosystem. Our solution is simple – talent, teamwork, solutions. We also educate and train on Crypto/Blockchain and Metaverse, as well as provide advisory/consultancy. Apart from this, I also work with Interstellar where we do a lot of cutting edge Blockchain infrastructure building. I do research work with SCRF, Kleros, and LBS; where the focus is on crypto, blockchain, and smart contract academia/research. And lastly, I volunteer with Emerging Technologies for Emerging Markets (E4E) where we ensure amongst other things that policymakers understand the emerging technologies ecosystem.”
Being a leader coupled with being a woman in a field mostly dominated by men can be a bit tasking. But Buki has been managing and coping with the pressure without hassles.
“I don’t really focus on position, race, or being female. I focus more on my work and passion guided by my faith. I also keep close tabs with other phenomenal women in my field.”
The nexus between law and crypto
Many would agree that Law and Crypto are not-so-related fields. Interestingly, Buki believes she has been able to combine both disparate worlds with balance and efficiency.
“I believe Crypto and Law are very related but many don’t seem to think so. I have many who have said to me that decentralization means the end of law… I don’t agree. I believe lawyers and the law will need to evolve but there will still be a place for the practice of law”, she said.
She believes that the recurring stories of hacks and online fraud are consistent justification for the need for legal practitioners to play in the space:
“Researchers have an ongoing argument… is code law? Or is the law code? Due to the presence of bad actors and the possibilities of disputes, abuse, fraud, money laundering, human rights, and so many factors, there will always be a place for law. But like I said… we will need to be dynamic with time and technology.”
She concludes that as a fledgeling field, crypto needs law and law needs crypto:
“Without law/regulation, crypto would not achieve mass adoption and would become a safe haven for bad actors. However…..where law decides to remain traditional instead of adapting to Blockchain technology, it could then become obsolete.”
On the future of the internet
Web3 is the internet buzzword of the moment. While the concept has its critics who think it is just a fad, there are ardent proponents who believe it is the future of the internet. Buki Ogunsakin is a member of the latter group.
“Evidently I don’t think it’s a fad, otherwise I wouldn’t invest my time and career in it. Is it the future of the internet? Yes… Web3.0 has disrupted the global financial industry. It will have the same impact on several other industries as well… law, supply chain/logistics, real estate, health, and so on and so forth. Web3.0 is also converging with other technologies like XR, and AI to create the new Metaverse ecosystem. This I believe will be the nearest future until quantum computing takes over”, she said.
Other concepts gaining traction alongside Web3 are the Metaverse and NFT. As a matter of fact, both are elements of the bedrock on which Web3 is built. Buki has this to say about them:
“The Metaverse is not just one place. It’s a new economy and ecosystem being built that can also be experienced in an immersive way. Digital Natives will spend most of their time here in the nearest future just the same way we currently spend countless hours online on our devices. NFTs will be the new mode of ownership, trading, and exchange… and there will be several use cases because almost anything can be an NFT (non-fungible or semi fungible).”
Crypto in Africa
Despite the hurdles and barriers, it can be said that Nigeria has been at the forefront of crypto adoption in Africa and across the world.
According to a Kucoin report released in April, more and more Nigerians are jumping on the crypto bandwagon. Per the report, crypto investors account for 35% of the Nigerian population aged 18-60.
This shows that the country’s young, tech-savvy population has eagerly adopted cryptocurrencies. But there is still a resounding question, will Nigeria and Africa play a pivotal role in the crypto space, in the near future?
“Considering the deeply rooted corruption issues in Nigeria and in most parts of our continent, most of us know it will be a very difficult curve. For corporations, it will be easy…but for the government, it will require bold leaders to buy-in. I am hopeful that it will happen, and Africa will finally begin to play a vital global role”, she concludes.
Buki Ogunsakin said that BBO solicitors will continue to participate in the growth of the crypto ecosystem. And, that the team will continue to play their part in ensuring compliance with regulations within the ecosystem.
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