It is with great pleasure that I welcome you all to what has become a regular feature in the public awareness strategy of the NDIC’s calendar, the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) Special Day at the Lagos International Trade Fair. I wish to warmly welcome all our distinguished guests, particularly our royal fathers, state government officials, captains of industry, organised private sector, members of the academia, civil societies and gentlemen of the press who found time to honour our invitation despite their busy schedules.
I am indeed delighted that the Corporation’s participation this year has coincided with the 30th anniversary of the Lagos International Trade Fair. I therefore congratulate the President and the entire Council Members of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) for the celebration of 30 years of landmark achievements and contributions toward the development of business and commerce in Lagos state and in particular Lagos being the financial hub of Nigeria.
The theme of this year’s trade fair is; “Positioning the Nigerian Economy for Diversification and Sustainable Growth” which falls in line with the current drive by the present administration to break away from a monolithic economy and develop economic potentials for diversification by harnessing our human and natural resources toward the nation’s economic growth in order to improve the standard of living amongst Nigerians. In line with this theme of securing a better economic climate for Nigeria, the NDIC stands to enlighten Nigerians about the benefits of savings culture. As one of the three pillars of financial safety-net, the Corporation has been protecting the interest of depositors by ensuring the safety of their bank deposits. This ideal is encapsulated in our strap line: “Protecting your bank deposits!”
Since it commenced operations in 1989, the NDIC had been discharging its mandate creditably. It is apt to reiterate the NDIC’s efforts over the years by putting depositors as its top priority. The maximum deposit insurance coverage (MDIC) per depositor per bank has progressively increased from ₦50,000.00 in 1989 to its current ₦500,000 per depositor per DMB. Similarly, the insured limit for microfinance banks (MFBs) and primary mortgage banks (PMBs) in 2009 was increased from ₦100,000.00 to ₦200,000.00 per depositor per MFB/PMB in 2010. However, on August 4, 2016, the Hon. Minister of Finance approved an 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 sub sector.
Following the CBN’s licensing of non-interest banking institutions (NIBIs) and 21 mobile money operators (MMOs), the Corporation equally extended deposit insurance coverage to the subscribers of these banking products to the maximum limit of ₦500,000.00 per depositor. In addition, the Corporation developed frameworks of Pass-Through Deposit Insurance Scheme (PTDIS) and non interest deposit insurance scheme (NIDIS) to the MMOs and non interest banks subscribers respectively with a maximum insured limit of ₦500,000.00 per subscriber. It is however pertinent to point out that depositors who have funds in excess of the insured limit are entitled to liquidation dividend after recovery of debts and sale of physical assets of the closed banks.
The recent economic realities have brought to the fore the need to intensify the campaign in promoting Financial Literacy in line with the key objectives of National Financial Inclusion Strategy (NFIS) to reduce the percentage of adult Nigerians that do not have access to formal banking services from 46.3% in 2010 to 20.0% in 2020. The NDIC plays a crucial role here by ensuring that the hard earned funds of small savers are protected. This is the vital role of financial inclusion because the economically active poor require regular reassurance that the deposit taking financial institutions are safe and that they have access to their money whenever they need it.
The NDIC has also mapped out aggressive public awareness campaign strategies to promote financial inclusion. For instance, the Corporation has published 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” and “Your Savings are Protected by NDIC”. Most recently under the NDIC’s “catch them young” initiative, the Corporation initiated the publication of two books titled: “This Little Piggy” for primary schools and “The Money Tree” for secondary schools.
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 introduction of the DIS Courses: “Fundamentals of Deposit Insurance” and “Practice of Deposit Insurance” was aimed at enhancing undergraduates’ knowledge in the deposit insurance system and the role of NDIC in contributing to financial system stability.
It is in furtherance of the aforementioned public awareness strategies that the NDIC recognises the importance of participating in the annual Lagos International Trade Fair which not only attracts indigenous and international manufacturers and investors but also provides a platform for the Corporation to interact one on one with depositors and its other stakeholders. I therefore encourage you to visit the NDIC pavilion where our experienced staff are on ground to address your enquiries and clarify issues on the benefits and limitations of the deposit insurance scheme.
At this juncture, I wish to sound a word of caution to members of the public on the activities of illegal funds managers, otherwise known as “Wonder banks”. It is worrisome to note that despite repeated advice, many unsuspecting members of the public are still falling victims to the mouth watering interest being offered by these illegal funds managers. Once again, I must sound a word of warning that those who patronize these illegal funds managers are doing so at their own risk. For the avoidance of doubt, these illegal funds managers or ‘wonder banks’ are neither licensed by Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) nor under the NDIC deposit insurance coverage. Members of the public are therefore advised to patronize only banking institutions that display the NDIC sticker: “Insured by NDIC” in their banking halls or entrances. However, the regulatory authorities had set up an inter-agency committee under the Financial Services Regulatory Coordinating Committee (FRSCC) to stem the nefarious activities of these fraudsters across the nation.
Before concluding this address, I would also like to inform members of the public about the NDIC Toll free telephone line: 080063424357 which is a 24-hour Help Desk through which depositors and other stakeholders can make enquiries or lay their complaints on any sharp practices perpetrated by their banks. Members of the public can also visit our website: www.ndic.gov.ng which has been integrated with major social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.
In conclusion, on behalf of Management and staff of the NDIC, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the President and other Executive Members of the LCCI, our distinguished guests, particularly our royal fathers and gentlemen of the press who took time out of their busy schedules to be here with us today. May the Almighty God grant all of you journey mercies to your respective destinations. I thank you for your attention.
UMARU IBRAHIM, FCIB, mni
Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer,
NIGERIA DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION