As a major indicator of wealth distribution in Nigeria across income groups, a mere two per cent of Nigerians own 90 per cent of total deposits in Nigerian banks. This represents the wide gap between the rich and the poor in Nigeria, which continues to pose major socio-economic development challenges to the nation. Director of Research and International Relations at the Nigeria Deposit Insurance Corporation, NDIC, Alhaji Mohammed Umar, disclosed this at the Businessday Capital Market Development Annual Conference in Abuja, yesterday.
His words: “Our current deposit insurance coverage is N500, 000 for the Deposit Money Banks. And some people have said that it is low. I can tell you that it is very adequate for the majority of accounts. It will interest you to know that it covers over 90 per cent of accounts in the country. Indeed, Nigerians who have more than N500, 000 in their accounts are just two per cent.
“What we found is that this two per cent Nigerians have 90 per cent of banks’ total deposits. Look at that – two per cent Nigerians own 90 per cent of total banks deposits, while the remaining 98 per cent have just 10 per cent of total deposits. What that tells you is that the gap between the rich and the poor has continued in this country.”
Alhaji Umar added that there were about 70 million bank account holders in the country. The total bank deposits stood at N17.2 trillion, as at December 2015, according to a post on the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, website. Earlier in his address, the Director-General of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, Mr. Mounir Gwarzo, urged Pension Fund Administrators, PFAs, to invest more in the nation’s capital market, with a view to deepening it and ensuring better returns on contributor’s funds.