Umaru Ibrahim, the Managing Director/Chief Executive of the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) is determined to frustrate the activities of “wonder banks” operators who are wooing gullible investors with unrealistic high interest rates
He explained that the NDIC would cooperate with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to continuously sensitise the public on the effects of investing hard-earned money in “wonder banks” that end up bolting with people’s earnings. “Well, there has been an existing committee comprising security agencies, CBN, NDIC and SEC that continuously sensitises the public on the dangers of wonder banks that run away with people’s earnings. The wonder banks promise all sorts of mouth-watering impossible returns to people. As we speak, some of the operators of the wonder banks have been arraigned by security agencies and are being prosecuted. Their companies are being put into liquidation and those who lost monies are being reimbursed as much as possible through the proceeds of whatever is realised.”
Ibrahim disclosed that some wonder bank operators were arrested, prosecuted and made to refund depositors’ money. “The few bank balances they have, and the few assets they have, are being sold through the court process. The victims are being compensated. The wonder banks are not deposit taking institutions, so they are not licensed by CBN or insured by us. It’s just that in the interest of protecting poor Nigerians, we have to do something about it. So on emergence of wonder banks, we will not relent in calling Nigerians, educating and sensitising them about the dangers of patronising wonder banks,” he said.