Nigerians are not letting go of MMM and other Ponzi Schemes just to survive the recession

Nigerians are not ready to give up on MMM and other Ponzi schemes as a means of coping with the recession that has left the economy in ruins.

Earlier this year, Juliet Philips was fed up with the economic situation in Nigeria. She was a worker with a new generation bank in Lagos before she was sacked earlier in the year due to the recession the country is experiencing.

Since then, things have not been rosy. She was lucky to have saved some money while she was working and she fell back on it to keep body and soul together. But having to spend money without making any, she was soon running out of cash.

Amid the fear and uncertainty she faced as each day unfolds, Juliet was introduced to MMM by her friend four months ago. She invested N200,000 the first time and got N60,000 interest after a month. It was like a dream. Juliet couldn’t believe she could make such an amount in a month just like that.

That was all she needed for her life to return to normal. Today, she has become a preacher of the MMM gospel, telling all who care to listen of the dividends of being a part of the scheme.

For Mr. Chinedu Obianusi, anybody who speaks ill of MMM is his enemy. He revealed that MMM saved his life. Due to the economic recession in the country, his business went down, his family was struggling to eat and school fees were piling up.

But after he invested his money in MMM, he can now meet his family responsibilities with ease. Today, he is telling everyone who cares to listen about the goodness of the MMM scheme.

Miss. Ayinke Coker started MMM in May 2016 after she lost her job and there was no hope of finding another one. She has made approximately N500,000 since then and there is no stopping her. But, recently considering the news that the scheme might crash, she has limited the amount she gives in providing help and it’s out of the money she previously made from the scheme.

Even if it does crash, which Ayinke doesn’t believe or think will be soon, she believes the loss will be bearable as she keeps supporting others with her profits.

Mr. Onyekachi Ifedi won’t let the train of making money through MMM pass him by, not during this economic recession. He said that MMM Nigeria has been a huge blessing. Ifedi started three months ago and is already smiling to the bank. He has made over N200, 000 profit. Right now, he is expecting an extra N300, 000 for spreading the news of the scheme.

Ifedi is not oblivious of the risks involved in the scheme. He says he didn’t see any other way out of his financial challenges when he joined. He just feels the money he has made and is still making is worth all the risks involved.

Gbemisola Taiwo has made over N300,000 for investing in MMM for two months now. Leaping with joy and happy that her Christmas won’t be a dull one, she said that MMM is the saviour of many Nigerians.

‘’I was skeptical at first, but after it was explained to me, I decided to take the risks. I provided help with N1million and got N300,000 interest plus welcome bonus.’’

Adaobi Nwankwo is not left out too. Defending the scheme, she said that everyone needs to survive and that MMM is the real thing now, Ponzi scheme or not.

She asked if one should continue to wallow in doubt until the person is done for? “Why not allow people utilize this opportunity to the fullest. I’m very well into networking. I’m a member of H2i (Helping Hands International) and Crowd rising. Very very soon I will explore Utimate Cycler and RIIAB (Residual Income In A Box.’’

Nwankwo has her main business which she invests time in every day, but she noted that these schemes are just tools to generate more funds for her business. That way, if these schemes collapse, one will still be up and doing financially.

“Even if they eventually crash someday, you know you tried it and gained something from it. There is no harm in trying. We need to and must survive, recession or not”, she added.

What is MMM?

MMM was established in 1989 by Sergei Mavrodi and his brother Vyacheslav Mavrodi, and Olga Melnikova. The name of the company was taken from the first letters of the three founders’ surnames.

Initially, the company imported computers and office equipment. In January 1992, tax police accused MMM of tax evasion, leading to the collapse of MMM-bank, and causing the company difficulty obtaining financing to support its operations.

MMM created its successful Ponzi scheme in 1994. The company started attracting money from private investors, promising annual returns of up to one thousand percent. It is unclear whether a Ponzi scheme was Mavrodi’s initial intention, in as much as such extravagant returns might have been possible during the Russian hyperinflation in such com

Since the shares were not quoted on any stock exchange and the company itself determined the share price, it maintained a steady price growth of thousands of percent annually, leading the public to believe its shares were a safe and profitable investment.

In November 2015, MMM launched a website targeting the Nigerian audience, also claiming a “30% per month” return including other acquirable bonuses.

The entity was self-described as a “mutual aid fund where ordinary people help each other.” 2.4 million people had signed up by late 2016, with the country’s unemployed as primary targets.

Nigeria’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission earlier confirmed that they are monitoring the scheme.

More Ponzi schemes flood Nigeria

As the recession continues to tighten its grip on Nigerian economy, more international Ponzi schemes are targeting Nigerians. It is no longer news that online money making Ponzi schemes have taken over Nigeria’s cyberspace with an aggressive popularity on daily basis.

According to Wikipedia, a Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation where the operator, an individual or organization, pays returns to its investors from new capital paid to the operators by new investors, rather than from profit earned through legitimate sources.

Operators of Ponzi schemes usually entice new investors by offering higher returns than other investments, in the form of short-term returns that are either abnormally high or unusually consistent.

MMM Nigeria

MMM Nigeria is a technical platform, which helps millions of participants worldwide to connect those who need help to those who are ready to provide help, for free. All transferred funds to another participant are your help given by your own good will to another one, absolutely gratis. The scheme promises a 30% return on investment to members. MMM currently is the most popular online money making portal in Nigeria.

Ultimate Cycler

This is second most popular online money making Ponzi scheme in Nigeria. The founder Peter Wolfing is United States based network marketer. When you register, you will need to donate the sum of N12, 500 to a fellow member and the person will then confirm your donation.

The system (Admin) will put four other registered people under you from spillovers who will also pay you N12, 500 each, into your bank account, making N50, 000. You can also bring people to register under you if you can’t wait for the system to do it for you.

Givers Forum

This is also popular in Nigeria. Givers Forum is a community of givers, people who provide each other financial help on the principle of helping others while expecting bounty returns.

In Givers Forum, you don’t have to make contracts or pledge your property, there are no lenders and no debtors. Everything is very simple: one participant asks for help, and another person helps.

The only thing that Givers Forum demands from its participants is to be honest and kind to each other. You ask for financial help when you need it, you give financial help when you are able to do it.

Just like MMM Nigeria, there is no central account, where all the system money flows to (and where it can be easily stolen from). All the money is only in the bank accounts of the participants themselves. Participants transfer to each other directly, without intermediaries.

In fact, Givers Forum only regulates the process and makes available to members several affordable housing projects across the nation and nothing more.


Zarfund is also popular in Nigeria. The scheme was founded by Hannes Jordaan, an online entrepreneur living in South Africa. Zarfund helps with direct funding for your financial needs. With this program you are just a click away from financial freedom.

After joining your level 1 up line’s referral link, you pay your up line 0.03btc per month to be in a position to receive the same from each of your level 1 down lines. Later, you will receive the same amount from each of the two people you recruited.

This initiates a chain such that with enough collection of funds from your level 1 down line you get to upgrade to level 2 in the same manner you joined. This process keeps expanding and helps you gain enough money in a convenient way.


This is another popular ponzi scheme in Nigeria. International Charity Club (iCharity Club) is an International network of donors. iCharity Club is a peer-to-peer donation platform for members to help other members in a systematic way. By using this platform, members can give and receive donations from each other. It is open to everybody, anywhere in the world can join this program.

The major difference between iCharity Club and other networks is that iCharity Club platform allows members to donate directly to each other (peer-to-peer) while other networks allow members to donate to each other through a central system (peer-to-server).

This is why it has been very difficult for people to succeed in other networks being that every payment goes into a central system which further decides who to give, when to give and how to give members money.

Crowd rising

This is relatively new in Nigeria. The system was designed in such a way that it can be used by fundraisers, such as for Charities, Schools, Clubs, Churches, non-profits, family, and personal financial needs and soon.

The donations are not collected by the Administrator, nor are they automated by the system, rather donations are sent directly and personally from one member to another member, from one member’s payment processor to another member’s payment processor.

Get Help Worldwide

Get help worldwide is one of the trending mutual fund peer-to-peer donation portals in Nigeria today. The scheme has only been in existence since August 2016 and it’s already having a major share in the mutual fund community.

It is simply an online Community where people are helping each other financially directly with no third parties involved, whatever help you give to someone financially grows by 30% if in local currency or 50% if in Bitcoin in 30 days.

Warnings from SEC

The Security and Exchange Commission, SEC warned Nigerians about the popular Ponzi scheme, MMM in August. The SEC Director-General, Mr. Mounir Gwarzo, called on investors to be weary of ponzi schemes operating in the country.

He said that even if the company was registered with SEC, potential investors should endeavour to find out from the commission whether the company’s activities had been approved before they invest their money.

He said the commission was collaborating with the police and other relevant law enforcement agencies to check the activities of the operators of such schemes.

The warning was supposed to kill the growing popularity of MMM Nigeria but surprisingly, it turned out to be a free advertisement for MMM. The Central Bank of Nigeria also warned Nigerians to desist from patronizing the scheme calling it a wonder bank.

But the more government agencies dish out warnings and cautions, the more MMM and other ponzi schemes have gained sympathy from Nigerians.

Later on, the House of Representatives ordered a probe into MMM Nigeria, a move that broke the Internet as many people protested and loyal participants of the scheme threatened fire and brimstone.

MMM is demonic, Apostle Johnson Suleman‎ alleges

Fiery preacher and founder of Omega Fire Ministry, Apostle Johnson Suleman has described the ponzi scheme, MMM as demonic.

Apostle Suleman during a sermon recently warned his members against involving in the scheme, saying that the founder is a fraudster.

“MMM is demonic. It is satanic. In fact, go and find out about the founder of MMM, he is a fraudster. He defrauded people in America and that is what you are involving yourself in and you claim to be a Christian.’’

According to Suleman, ‘’Nigerians are looking for easy way out. Many Christians have gotten into it. If you are involved in MMM, I will have to pray for you today. It is not of God. Let me tell you today, any quick rich scheme is wrong. In life, if it is not favour from a particular individual but a quick rich scheme, it is not of God.

“Even the Central Bank of Nigeria has warned against MMM. The truth is that Nigerians are lazy. MMM is wrong”,  he said.


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