Criticisms have continued to trail the announcement by the management of controversial ponzi scheme, MMM, that the organisation has officially commenced a “RESTART” of the system.
In a message posted on the home page of participants Saturday morning, the scheme said that it had struggled to stay afloat after going on a break in December 2016; but had been forced to do a system restart.
Until its announcement on Saturday, the controversial scheme had left numerous Nigerian participants lamenting with millions of Naira trapped in the scheme.
According to the message seen by PREMIUM TIMES, the scheme also blamed the media and government for its failure, saying the problems accumulated and it had to announce a “restart”.
“Unfortunately, we were unable to overcome the consequences of the crisis triggered by the authorities and mass media incautious actions at the beginning of this year,” the message reads.
“Despite all our efforts…the problems have been accumulating and, as a result, we have to announce a restart.
So, there is a restart: All old Mavros (acquired before this announcement is posted) are frozen. We will gradually buy them back as the System develops.
“All transactions with new Mavros (acquired after this announcement is posted) will be carried out on the usual terms with no restrictions. Some amendments have been made to the rules: Mavros will now start growing at the moment the request is confirmed (not at the moment it is created, as it was previously).”
The scheme explained that, consequently, bonuses will start growing at the moment when the main contribution is confirmed, upon which bonuses have been rewarded on.
It said its new measure will significantly reduce the load on the System while also significantly improving its stability.
“As a matter of fact, a restart is not the end of the world, it’s just a restart of the System and nothing more. Continue to provide help and you’ll get it all back (even if you’ve lost something now). It all starts from the beginning.
“It’s the most opportune time for participating. We would also like to remind you (just for form’s sake) that everyone had been fully aware of all the risks and had read the WARNING which they had also confirmed by checking the relevant box in the process of registration.”
But the announcement was met with criticism among many participants who lamented their loss in 2016 and warned others of falling victim.
On online chat platforms monitored by PREMIUM TIMES, many Nigerians vowed not to return to the scheme even as a few suggested that they may give it another try.
“Truth is, Nigerians have short circuit memory. If MMM comes back tomorrow, some will still put their money inside,” wrote a commenter with the username FxWarrior on Nairaland.
Another commentator, NLearn wrote, “It is time we put an end to this MMM scam. The money they are scamming our people are not even in the country. 70% of the money is leaving the country.”
On his part, a commentator with the username TopCruise, questioned the timing of the purported comeback.
“Last year November when Christmas was close it crashed and many trade blames against each other. This November MMM still want to capitalize on the method they use on hoodwinking gullible people,” he wrote.
“It is not about panic. A Ponzi scheme can never last… you are yet to learn your lessons. If you don’t realise this, you will fall into the trap again,” a Nairaland commentator with the username Activa replied to another commentator who described the scathing remarks made by many Nigerians as “scare mongering”.
The MMM as a ponzi scheme gained popularity in Nigeria in 2016 with the promise that it would pay participants 30 per cent return on investment every 30 days.
Despite various warnings by the Nigerian government and its financial regulators, many Nigerians adamantly went on to participate in the scheme.
In December 2016, the scheme went on “Pause Mode”, freezing the funds of participants and allegedly bolted with N18 billion but promised to resume payments by January 2017.
By January, MMM kept its promise by resuming but it said 2016 participants’ money was to be paid back in percentages of new money “invested”. This raised concerns among participants.
In July, the scheme went on a semi-pause mode when it could not pay withdrawal requests. While those who lost their money continued to wait and lament, the ponzi scheme, commenced payment of those who “invested” their money in August, promising to backdate the payment to cover those whose money were still pending from June and July. It however could not fulfil its promises until it announced a “restart” on Saturday.
Earlier in 2016, the Nigerian Government, through the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Securities and Exchange Commission warned Nigerians against investing in the scheme because its credibility was in doubt.