The founder of MMM, Sergey Mavrodi has written an open letter to the Nigerian government that if the Ponzi scheme collapses, millions of Nigerians will suffer, noting that “MMM is their only means of livelihood”.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the letter was displayed on the page of all participants of the scheme to justify the importance of the popular Ponzi scheme.
Mavrodi warned the federal government that the money being made from the scheme was being redistributed among Nigerians as a way of “restoring social justice”.
The letter reads in part: “So far MMM has come under a constant attack from you. In this regard, I would like to ask you a few simple questions. Since you are concerned with the interests of millions of your fellow citizens, I hope that you would be so kind to answer them.
“What are you trying to get? Do you want the MMM System to collapse and millions of people to suffer? Who will support them then if now MMM is their only means of livelihood? Will you? You even don’t pay wages to people? Or might you not care about them? Might you be using a trendy topic to make a good name for yourselves? What will you say to a mother who will have no money to buy food for her child? Will you let her child die for the sake of the higher interests of the economy?
“You say that MMM is a scam. What is the scam here, if all members are warned in advance about all the risks, the possible and impossible ones? They know there are no investments at all. The warning is a red text on a yellow background placed on most prominent place of the website.
“You say that MMM is bad. Why? Yes, it produces nothing, but nothing gets out of the country either. The money is just redistributed among the citizens of Nigeria. It gets from those who are richer to poorer ones, in this way restoring social justice. What’s wrong with that?
“You have repeatedly stated that “it should be investigated!.. researched!..” It means you know nothing about this System yet; you even haven’t understood how it works.
“And finally. If you know what is right for people, why is the life so bad in the country?”
He further noted that the MMM “has been working in Nigeria for a year, and according to your estimates, the total number of members now is about 3 million people”.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) have previously warned Nigerians against participating in the scheme while the house of representatives also ordered an investigation into the operation of the scheme, in October.
In 2007, a Russian court convicted Mavrodi, a former deputy of the State Duma, of defrauding 10,000 investors of 110 million rubles ($4.3 million).
He founded MMM in 1989 but he then disappeared after he declared it bankrupt on December 22, 1997. He was on the run until his arrest in 2003.