The Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) has said about three million Nigerians lost N18 billion in the Phonzi scheme, popularly called Mavrodi Mundial Movement (MMM).
Alhaji Umaru Ibrahim, managing director of the Corporation, stated while speaking at the ongoing 38th Kaduna International Trade Fair on Thursday.
Represented by Alhaji Hadi Suleiman, NDIC deputy director of Corporate Affairs, Ibrahim lamented that despite repeated warnings by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the corporation, Nigerians still patronise MMM.
He said: ”The Phonzi scheme is the phenomenon of illegal fund managers, popularly called ‘Wonder Banks’ which have continued to defraud unsuspecting members of the public of their hard earned money. This phenomenon has been a source of concern because despite our repeated warnings over the years, some members of the public have continued to fall victims of their fraudulent practices.
“We would like to reiterate the fact that these fund managers are illegal as they are neither licences by the CBN to take deposits from members of the public nor are those who patronise them covered by the NDIC deposit insurance scheme.
“I want to also draw the attention of some cooperative societies which often go beyond their primary mandate by accepting contributions from members as cooperative societies are only recognised to mobilise savings from their members.”
While advising the general public on the dangers of keeping large sums of money at home or in market shops, he said there are 978 licensed microfinance banks nationwide out if which seven are spread across Kaduna State.