It is with great delight to be present at this occasion of the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) Special Day at the 2016 Abuja International Trade Fair. Let me warmly welcome all our distinguished special guests, particularly distinguished government officials, our royal fathers, representatives of corporate bodies, members of the academia, civil society groups, gentlemen of the press and other eminent personalities for finding time out of your respective busy schedules to honour us with your valuable presence.

I wish to commend the President and the entire Executive Members of the Abuja Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ABUCCIMA) for another successful achievement at organizing the annual Abuja International Trade Fair which is fast becoming a flagship event for promotion of trade, commerce and investment in the country. The theme of this year’s fair: “Make it in Nigeria” is very apt and further demonstrates the Chamber’s commitment to the hidden economic potentials requiring new economic frontiers and opportunities to revitalize the nation’s economy in the face of current challenges.

Your royal highnesses, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, it is pertinent to state at this juncture that the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) began its participation at the Abuja International Trade Fair in 2015 as part of public awareness initiatives. This was also meant to showcase landmark achievements on its mandate and operational activities to its diverse stakeholders.

Recall that the NDIC was established by the Federal Government under the NDIC Decree 22 of 1988 which was repealed and replaced by the NDIC Act No. 16 of 2006 to insure deposit liabilities of licensed deposit-taking financial institutions in Nigeria. The key mandate of the Corporation is to provide deposit guarantee to depositors of insured financial institutions, banking supervision, distress resolution and bank liquidation. The whole import of the Corporation’s mandate is to protect depositors by providing a mechanism for reimbursement in the unlikely event of a bank failure and to contribute to financial system stability as a key pillar of financial safety-net.

It is worthy to note that since inception, the Corporation had discharged its mandate creditably well by demonstrating its ability to adapt to economic changes of its stakeholders. The Corporation has progressively increased its maximum deposit insurance limit from ₦50,000.00 in 1989, to ₦200,000.00 in 2008 and to its current ₦500,000 per depositor per deposit money bank (DMBs) since 2009 to constantly reflect the realities of the nation’s economy. In the same vein, in 2008, the NDIC extended deposit insurance scheme to microfinance banks (MFBs) and primary mortgage banks (PMBs) with insured limit of ₦100,000.00. The limit was increased in 2009 from ₦100,000.00 to ₦200,000.00 per depositor per MFB/PMB. However, in 2016, the Minister of Finance approved the upward review of the deposit insured limit for depositors of PMBs to ₦500,000.00 in order to ensure coverage of over 90 percent of depositors in the banking sector.

Similarly, when the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) introduced the mobile payment services (MPS) and licensed the mobile money operators (MMOs) to promote financial inclusion, the NDIC rose to the occasion by extending deposit insurance coverage to subscribers of the mobile money operators (MMOs) by using the framework of Pass-Through Deposit Insurance Scheme (PTDIS) with a maximum insured limit of ₦500,000.00 per subscriber. The decision was implemented to ensure that subscribers do not lose their funds in the unlikely event of failure of any bank where such funds are domiciled.

Distinguished royal fathers and guests, the introduction of Non-Interest Banking (Sharia compliant banking) in Nigeria was approved by the CBN and the NDIC swiftly extended deposit insurance cover to bank depositors of the Non-interest banks. The Corporation also developed guidelines for deposit insurance coverage to the Non-interest Banking (NIBIs) up to ₦500,000.00 per depositor.

The Corporation in collaboration with the CBN under the purview of FSS2020 Strategy continues to partner with all stakeholders to propagate the objectives of the National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) to reduce the percentage of adult Nigerians that do not have access to financial services from 46.3% in 2010 to 20.0% by 2020. To this end, the Corporation has contributed to financial literacy by publishing various books which include “Financial Literacy in Nigeria: A Study Report”, “Perspectives on the Nigerian Financial Safety-Net”, “Basic Knowledge on Banking and Deposit Insurance”. Most recently for the benefits of primary and secondary schools under its “catch them young” initiative geared towards inculcating banking habits to the children instituted two books titled “This Little Piggy” for primary schools and “The Money Tree” for secondary schools and others like “Your Savings are Protected by NDIC” which were among others publication to inculcate financial education and literacy among the youths. Some of these publications were translated into major Nigerian languages.

The Corporation has also partnered with the National Universities Commission (NUC) to introduce a pilot scheme of two courses on Deposit Insurance Scheme (DIS) into the curricular of undergraduate programmes in seven (7) selected premier universities in the country. The DIS Courses are “Fundamentals of Deposit Insurance” and “Practice of Deposit Insurance”. The introduction of the DIS courses was aimed at enhancing undergraduates’ knowledge in deposit insurance practices and the importance of NDIC’s role in the banking system. The Corporation awarded the three (3) best students who scored 75%, 70% and 67% in the 300 level first semester examination on “Fundamentals of Deposit Insurance” course with the NDIC’s prize awards of ₦200,000.00, ₦150,000.00 and ₦100,000.00 respectively.

Similarly, the Corporation embarked on the nationwide Sensitization Seminar on NDIC mandate and financial literacy for National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Members. To date, over 27,000 National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) Members across 17 states of the country have benefited from the NDIC’s financial literacy campaign on the roles of Corporation in the banking system. Efforts are on-going to cover the remaining states on continuous basis for the purpose of enlarging the scope of financial inclusion and financial education towards consumer protection in the country.

Before concluding this address, I wish to reiterate the readiness of the Corporation to continue to effectively discharge its mandate of protecting the bank depositors through public awareness and enlightenment initiatives. To this end, I wish to enjoin depositors to continue to avail themselves of the Corporation’s robust 24-hour Help Desk with a Toll Free telephone line number 080063424357 for enquiries on depositors’ claims settlement and complaints on sharp practices by their banks.

However, it is important to remind the general public of the activities of illegal funds managers otherwise known as ‘Wonder Banks’ spreading their lies of financial mirage. It is a worrisome development to the financial regulatory system that despite repeated warnings, many unsuspecting and financially naive members of the public have continued to patronize these dubious funds managers in view of mouthwatering interest rates and unattainable returns they offered their victims. Some of them claimed to be assets and investment managers without any approval from regulatory supervision. For the avoidance of doubt, these ‘wonder banks’ or illegal funds managers are neither licensed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) nor are they under the NDIC deposit insurance scheme.

Members of the public are therefore advised to patronize only banking institutions be it DMBs, PMBs, NIBIs, MMOs and MFBs with a display of the NDIC Stickers carrying the words: “Insured by NDIC” in their banking halls or entrances and various branches across the country.

In conclusion, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the President and other Executive Members of the Abuja Chamber of Commerce, our royal fathers, distinguished guests, members of the public and gentlemen of the press who despite time constraints still honour our invitation at such short notice. It is our fervent prayer to Almighty God for His guidance, protection and journey mercies as you return to your respective destinations.
Thank you for your attention.

Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer
The Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Thursday, 6th October, 2016