Investors of MBA capital and trading limited, a forex training and capital investment company, on Sunday, stormed Christ Embassy Church at Rumuigbo, Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
The aggrieved investors stormed the church, asking its management to refund all the tithes and donations paid by MBA CEO, Maxwell Odum.
A Twitter user, @Tutsy22 tweeted on Monday, “Maxwell Odum N171 billion fraud: He scammed over 70,000 investors using MBA Trading and Capital investments. The investment company which promised 15% ROI for deposits starting from N350,000.
“Odum was the highest donor in his church, Christ Embassy, last year, donating N1 billion.”
Meanwhile, some investors of the company, who spoke with SaharaReporters in February alleged how major stakeholders in the company committed fraud.
The investors claimed that Odum now lives in affluence on investors’ money and owns over 200 plots of land that are being developed, including 130 plots allegedly bought around Sani Abacha Road in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
They also claimed that Odum was the biggest donor in his church, Christ Embassy, last year, donating N1 billion to the church.
Some of the investors, who spoke with SaharaReporters, said they invested in the company because of some promotional publications by major news outlets in the country.
It was also gathered that the company, headed by Maxwell Odum, is registered with the Corporate Affairs Commission and the Special Control Unit Against Money Laundering.
In media reports dated August 21, 2019, the Chairman, Anti-Corruption and Transparency Monitoring Unit, Presidential Villa, Alhaji Ahmad Sulaiman, was quoted as saying, “They (MBA) have come to us and we have assessed them. They want to be an advocate of not only the business they are doing but the anti-corruption and transparency drive of this government.
“They wrote to us and we assessed them. We asked them to go through ICPC (Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission) to train their staff; they’ve also registered with the Central Bank of Nigeria, CPC (Consumer Protection Council), and other regulatory agencies. When we assessed them, we realised they are credible, ethical, and want to do serious business tailored to the policy of the current administration.”
An investor, Favour Senibo, told SaharaReporters that she invested her money with MBA after seeing the publication stating that the company was established with a vision to impact the general populace with the knowledge of trading forex and creating platforms that will bring about sustainable financial freedom.
She also said the CEO, Odum, claimed the company had been certified by necessary regulatory agencies in Nigeria and that the company, unlike others, was not a Ponzi scheme.
Odum had promised a 15 per cent return of capital investment (ROI) for investors with a capital Investment of N360, 000 to N5 million.
According to her, a few months later, it was announced that MBA had been acquired by a certain company, World Citizen Equity Partners (WCEP), which would inject more investment to grow the business.
“After these publications of partnership on October 30, 2020, our ROI ceased. Odum claimed that MBAWCEP was undergoing an automated system upgrade to enable everyone to do their transaction on their own without going to the office and it would take just one month, promising payments were coming soon,” Senibo said.
She added: “So, with the support of one of the directors of WCEP, Vodina West, and Director, International Investment, the company promised that payments would resume fully on the 1st of December, that the Nigeria banks and regulatory bodies were the ones frustrating them and that it was the cause of the delay.
“They promised that those who were supposed to be paid on November 1 would be paid on December 1 and simultaneously like that. One month was added to our existing plan to make up for the month of November that wasn’t paid.
“They apologised for all the pressure and inconveniences they had caused everyone. They also claimed their staff members had been defrauding them. They started a new verification process with online investors; carried a verification process to even offline investors with the promise to pay all ROI and capital. They later announced that they would refund only capital.
“All attempts for people and journalists to speak with Chief Executive Officer/Managing Director of MBA Forex Institute, Maxwell Odum, proved abortive.”
She also stated that the company refunded capital to a few people but stopped after the Securities and Exchange Commission on February 5, 2021, set a new rule for collective investment schemes.
“MBA Trading sold 90 per cent shares to World Citizen Equity Partners (WCEP) when investors were crying out for help. From what we know, WCEP deals with immigration obtaining dual citizenship by investment.
“MBA, please the poor and vulnerable people in Nigeria are counting on you with their investments and at this point, are left in the dark without communication. Even after the SEC announcement, we wonder what the CEO, Maxwell Weli Odum, and his WCEP counterpart, Mrs Vodina West, are up to. As for me, my kids can’t go to school because their fees haven’t been paid. We can barely take two meals per day and our landlord is about to eject us from the house so we need help,” she said.
Another investor, Alalibo Amachree, said MBA had changed its name to Men In Business Thrive And Credit Cooperative Limited (MIBAC). He said he heard about the investment company from an online advert, and invested N3.5 million in it.
Amachree said he had no job at the moment and was already suicidal because of the challenges confronting him.
“I had received two ROIs before these sad events and as I speak with you, life has not been the same. Everything I have worked for over the last 7 years has disappeared into thin air.
“I currently don’t have any job I am doing at the moment and all that runs through my mind at this time is suicide. I can’t just imagine what is happening to me,” he said.
Also, David Spencer, another investor, said he was introduced to MBA by a staff member who claimed that the investment scheme was government approved.
Maxwell Odum N171 billion fraud: He scammed over 70,000 investors using MBA Trading and Capital investments. The investment company which promised 15% ROI for deposits starting from N350k
Odum was the highest donor in his church, Christ Embassy, last year, donating N1Bn. pic.twitter.com/tmYPLDQhuZ
— Adetutu Balogun, MBA (@Tutsy22) May 2, 2021
For those dragging Christ Embassy into this MBA Ponzi scheme talk. Pastor Chris had given this advance warning last year. This was more like a disclaimer from him, saying “we don’t run Ponzi schemes”. So the Maxwell fella should carry his cross and refund. pic.twitter.com/Np9rxvB6DL
— DukeofWealth (@iamEzeAku) May 3, 2021
We saved a Cooperative from investing (N32M) in MBA FOREX but some still went ahead to invest their personal funds…tears https://t.co/1hFpl0tMTi
— Nnamdi Chife (@NnamdiChife) May 3, 2021