The activities of Ponzi schemes operators have been on the increase in Nigeria, especially since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the nation. Several young people have fallen victim to these scams.
To curb this menace, commercial banks and other financial institutions have been tasked to support investment clubs. Tomie Balogun, Founder, The Green Investment Club (TGIC) is one of the investment experts who has called for more support to curb Ponzi schemes in the country.
She disclosed this at TGIC’s event tagged “The money movements of the young Nigerian of today.” According to her, the economic fallout from events such as the global market crash, economic recession and COVID-19 pandemic has pushed young Nigerians into the Ponzi camp.
She said, “The economic situation and the high incidence of these fraudulent schemes show an urgent need for financial education. TGIC is working to bridge the financial literacy gap among young people in Nigeria through its products and services. The club, from 35 members at its inception to over 1,700 members in three years, is targeting 10,000 members over the next five years.
“Our five-year vision is to help at least 10,000 people acquire financial education and provide them with investment advisory services. We expect this to increase savings deposits at financial institutions. The deposits will be mobilized to invest in small businesses in the economy. When these companies are supported, they will provide jobs for more people and reduce unemployment figures by at least 20%.”
She disclosed that the club found direct investment opportunities in the capital market, agribusiness, consumer lending, logistics, FinTech and real estate development sectors in Nigeria, United Kingdom and the United States.
Oladunni Olawuyi, Chief Operating Officer, Apel Asset Limited explained that investment platforms need the support of financial institutions to boost investment education.
She said, “The investment clubs help to clean up the economy of Ponzi schemes, promote financial education and diversification of investments in different economies.”
Unify exchange rate to cut production cost
Balogun tasked the Federal Government to unify the country’s exchange rate to reduce production costs. To her, multiple exchange rates lead to arbitrary fees, production costs, and higher prices for goods and services.
“The government should help SMEs and the manufacturing sector to increase their production in order to boost gross domestic product. The COVID-19 pandemic, despite the challenges, came with many investment opportunities for savvy investors,” she added.