By CHIOMA OBINAGWAM
THE Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC) said it is working tirelessly that Nigerians who have access to any form financial services (financial inclusion) increases to 80 per cent by the year 2020.
The Managing Director/ Chief Executive Officer, NDIC, Alhaji Umaru disclosed this at NDIC special day at the just concluded 2015 Lagos International Trade Fair.
“The corporation is in collaboration with the CBN has embarked on various public awareness initiatives on financial inclusion with a view to drastically reducing the percentage of Nigerians who have no access to any form of financial services from 70 to 20 per cent by year 2020,” he said.
Speaking through his representative, the Director, Assets Management Department of NDIC, Bashir Dada Umar, he said that upsurge in the use of mobile communication which has witnessed a phenomenal attraction of about 120 million subscribers, which translates to 70 per cent has given glimpse of hope that financial inclusion could be successful in Nigeria.
He added that the corporation which aimed at achieving the said target via mobile money stated that with 21 Mobile Money Operators(MMO) have so far been registered by the Central Bank of Nigeria, (CBN) across the country, where as another set of eight operators of MMOs are currently undergoing stages of pilot run for final licensing.
Umaru pointed out that NDIC in collaboration with CBN has embarked on various awareness initiatives on financial literacy and financial inclusion with a view to drastically reducing the percentage of Nigeria who have no access to any form of financial service.
According to him, the CBN has issued a regulatory framework for Mobile Payment Services in Nigeria since June, 2009 adding that the apex bank has granted licenses to 21 Mobile Money Operators (MMOs) across the country, comprising of 15 non-bank and six bank operators carrying out commercial operation as at June, 2015.
Ibrahim also stated that NDIC on its part had developed a framework for the extension of deposit insurance to individual subscribers of the MMOs in the form of pass-through deposit insurance adding that it had earlier developed a framework for the extension of deposit insurance scheme to depositors of non-interest banks.
Meanwhile, the Corporation warned the banking community against patronising illegal fund managers also known as “wonder banks” who offer extraordinary interest rates on deposits.
Umar stressed that CBN does not license these wonder banks and that they are not under the insurance cover of the NDIC whereby in the event of failure depositors get a maximum claim of N500, 000 as is done with licensed banks.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the corporation wishes to make it categorically clear that only depositors of banking institutions that are licensed to collect deposits by the CBN, Deposit Money Banks, Microfinance Banks, Primary Mortgage Banks and Non-Interest/Islamic Banks are under the NDIC insurance over,” Ibrahim stated.