From Godffrey Anyanwu, Awka
The Director General of Debt Management Office (DMO), Mr. Abraham Nwankwo, has stated the new Federal Government of Nigeria Savings Bond (FGNSB) is designed purposefully to favour the poor and give them a stake in government.
Nwankwo, who was addressing leaders of market unions and middle income earner organisations in an advocacy/sensitisation workshop on the FGNSB in Onitsha, said that over the years, government had issued bond but it remained elitist instruments, which were sold as wholesale bond to privileged individuals, corporate companies and organisations.
“All these super rich individuals bought it as wholesale bond, but the difference we have in the FGNSB is that we are making these bonds available to the ordinary Nigerians.
“There are a lot to benefit from investing in the FGNSB. First is that it is an opportunity for the common man to have a stake in the country. You can boast of having borrowed to the Federal Government.
“Again, your investment has interest accruing to you, straight into your bank account and your interest is tax free. There are many benefits. By Monday next week, the savings bond will open and it will remain open for five days. We will also disclose the interest rate, and everyone is at liberty to buy. You can invest from as little as N5,000 to as high as N50 million,” Nwankwo said.
The workshop featured teachings on the workings of bond and how to purchase them. DMO’s Director of Portfolio Management, Oladele Afolabi, took participants through a lecture on the bonds, while reeling out the list of accredited stockbrokers.
Chairman of Niger Bridgehead Market, Mr. Emmanuel Anagu, who spoke on behalf of other market leaders at the event stated that he was truly convinced that the DMO means well for the poor by taking the workshop to traders in Onitsha.
“Before now, we hear of sales of Federal Government bond but it is usually for the very rich but today, government has brought it down to us, and what we ask is that we must make this workshop a regular one to drum it into the minds of our people.”
The DG also reiterated the importance of the purchase of the savings bond, saying that it could serve as a means of saving for the future. “Let me also tell you that in the case of emergency, you can sell your bond before the maturity period to solve your problems. Of course, we know that Onitsha people are very resourceful and can provide the money needed by the Federal Government.”