Nigerians on Monday in Lagos explained that the current economic reality was making it difficult for them to sustain the culture of saving money in the bank.
A cross section of them told newsmen that rising inflation and increasing prices of goods and services left many with nothing to save.
These Nigerians gave their opinions on World Savings Day, a day created to increase the public awareness of the importance of savings for modern economies and individuals alike. Mr Uche Obodo, a civil servant, said that his salary could barely take him home, much less saving in the bank.
Obodo noted that the high rate of inflation and the almost daily rises in price were putting much pressure on what was left as salary.
“I can barely feed my family with my salary. It is not as if I don’t know the importance of saving money for the rainy day, but it is not just possible for me to do so now,’’
Obodo said. Miss Bola Ogundele, a teacher, said that saving required discipline but added that she did not have anything left after paying her bills.
“Most times, I borrow almost half of my salary before it comes. The salary is not enough for my upkeep,’’ Ogundele said. Mrs Nkechi Obiora, a journalist, said that she usually saved money through a thrift association in her office.
According to her, it is of no use leaving money in her bank accounts since the money deducted from her account is more than the interest accrued to the money in the account. Mr Ariyo Bamidele , a fish farmer, said he had learnt the discipline of saving money since his undergraduate days. He noted that the practice was difficult and required discipline to continue.
Meanwhile Mr Anton Heerden, Executive Vice President, Africa and Middle East at Sage, has advised Small and Medium Enterprises to save money “for a bad day’’. Heerden said in a statement that SMEs should aim at some savings in the bank as a buffer for difficult months when sales were low or debtors missed payments.
“ If your business has some cash in reserve, you’ll be able to fund your growth in the future, avoid taking loans at punitive interest rates and meet your creditors’ payment deadlines,’’ Heerden advised.