Do you believe in Jazz?
No. Not music o. You know that our African special juju that is mostly used for bad or fraudulent things?
I have heard stories of people who were duped with jazz, I am sure we all know those stories. They touch you and you give them everything you own, or go to an ATM and withdraw all your money while you are in a trance or something. I always nodded my head at these stories but in my mind pfffffft, balderdash!
Not until it came home – Last year my brother fell into the hands of these people and he gave them everything he owned. It wasn’t enough and they asked him for more so he called me and that was how we knew something was wrong and sent help to him.
These days the scammers are not even bothering to use jazz, they send you text message, Credit/debit alert.
I get alerts from banks I don’t have accounts with, almost on a daily basis. They send text messages; if you call them they speak Queen’s English and ask you for your ATM pin.
Recently, my friend’s mother fell into their hands. She is almost 70, so when she couldn’t use her ATM after getting their scam message, she called the number assuming it was the bank. The bastard wiped her account clean, and still had the guts to call her to gloatingly ask: “Did you see my alerts?”
The other type of scammers are the ones who just returned to the country and do not know how to speak English or where to change their dollars.
Early this month, I got into a taxi with them. One minute the taxi was silent, next they were talking about dollars. It was the scariest thing, watching them try to lure me into their conversation, asking me to escort them to Eko Hotel to change their dollars; one of them was busy speaking fluent French.
They took me way past my destination and refused to stop the vehicle, it was the scariest thing. God came through, they stopped the vehicle abruptly, and I came out with shaky limbs. I still can’t tell how it happened, I guess God remembered all the prayers of my poor mother and the little I mumble every now and then. They just parked and asked me to get out like I just said something that upset them, meanwhile, I could only converse silently with God, like I said, He came through.
As I walked home I wondered; is this how people become hashtags on twitter? Please help us RT, #missingperson?
The men in the taxi were all old, bald-headed, grey-haired grandfathers, their job is to drive around and look for people to scam. The experience left me shaken for weeks.
I told a friend about it, after listening he told his own story. A friend who was driving collected a pamphlet from someone along the road. Next thing she became really drowsy, then noticed a car following her from behind. Fortunately, she was close to a friend’s place, when the idiots saw she had gone to someone they turned back, probably to look for another victim.
We should be careful people. We cannot depend on our government to protect us from these fraudsters, or even help put them behind bars. They are everywhere, prowling like the lion looking for whom to devour.
Your bank will not send you text messages or call and ask you to send them your account details, and even if they do make sure you go to the bank to do your transactions. Do not give people your account details over the internet or phone.
We hardly read those pamphlets handed to us along the road, so why do we collect them? I stopped taking them long ago, since they are now using it as a medium to rob people, biko do not collect again. Let them advertise their products and services via radio, TV or billboards.
No foreigner will move to a country and not know where to change money; they change money at the airport. You are not a Bureau de Change, a bank, or are you a mallam selling dollars? Don’t let greed put you in trouble.
They keep coming up with new tactics everyday, so stay safe people. Scammers are not smiling.
Una happy Independence from scammers!