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Scam : Nigerian Security Agencies Put On Alert Over CSO’s Letters To MDA’s.

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By Our Correspondent

The Nigerian Security agencies have been urged to be alert over scam letters allegedly emanating from Civil Society Organizations streaming into government agencies of late calling for suspension, investigation, or outright dismissal of government functionaries.

Our Correspondent gathered that the letters hurriedly produced in computer-designed format often carry the same messages written from different angles.

Some of them are so shabbily done, that they leave tell-tale signs of sinister motives.

While many of them are unsigned, the others carry well-spelled inscriptions such as “Comrade”. “President”. “General Secretary”, “Supreme Leader”, or even “Chief Prosecutor”.

Others sighted carry “Director, Northern Operations” and “Director, Southern Operations”.

Some government officials also sighted letterheads bearing “Niger=Delta Intelligentsia SCID”, “National Watch-Dog for Good Governance”, “Action Group Against Corrupt Agencies”, “Alternative Substitute for Appointed Officials” and even “Nemesis of Corrupt MDA Officials!”

Some of them are so laughable that sociopolitical observers are wondering when this brand of scam was mooted.

Truly, Civil Society Organizations are empowered by the Freedom of Information Act(FOI) to seek proper information regarding any suspected procedure.

However, investigation shows that these CSOs appear to have gone beyond their level of recognized mandate.
“A good number of them, apparently cashing in on perceived misdeeds of government appointees exploit the situation to demand huge sums of money as gratification to let them off the hook”.

“The possibility of illicit enrichment created by this route has now blossomed into a large-scale business with many miscreants joining the bazaar”, an official was quoted as saying.

“Surprisingly, many of the new entrants do so with “unregistered” organizations. Inquiries into one of them with the legend “Public Service Accountability Group” at the Corporate Affairs Commission returned a negative result”.

“Another one, a mushroom for that matter “Southeast Alliance for Positive Initiative”, was so poorly done, that it left our investigators wondering as to their true motive. As of now, some of the die-hard elements in this new fad have escalated the practice by involving some dark elements in the security agencies”.

They now “collude” with some willing associates in uniform to strike “fear” into a would-be victim and thereafter perfect the “deal”. Through their involvement, they hope the “package” and ‘returns” will be so high to satisfy their voluptuous appetite! A casual visit to some of the addresses and interaction with the so-called “leaders” exposed their lavish lifestyle often at the expense of their victims. Unfortunately, the majority of the practitioners appear to come from certain parts of the country.

When our Correspondent accosted a known civil society organization practitioner in FCT, he rightly stated, “These are fake people and we are going to do our best to expose them”, he assured.

Speaking further, the fellow, who prefers to remain anonymous described those perpetrating the scam as “jobless” otherwise they would have found a better vocation.

Nevertheless, as the shady practice continues, those who see it as a “source of income” have now “re-strategized” to adopt it as a “Racket” to bleed continually unsuspecting government appointees.

“The key instrument here is “fear”, said the fellow interviewed. “They contrive and manipulate your psychology to launch their attack and should anyone fall for it, then they would smile to their banks”, he disclosed.

He added that, “We know the trade; these people, you often find them in local hotels hanging around drinking”.

Truly, an encounter with one of the quack CSO operators was revealing; he smelt alcohol throughout our conversation and wasn’t coherent at all. Asked about his reason for joining the “business”, he responded,
“My friend, na survive we dey survive”.

However, complaints have now reached the ears of top security agencies and it is believed they are working on a clear path of action to discourage the practice. One of the options is for victims to speak out whenever such letters are received. Another is to report the CSO to the Corporate Affairs Commission for withdrawal of their registration.
“What is not lost on members of the public is that call it “anti-corruption crusaders” if you like, the real meaning of that shady practice is “blackmail” “Any business that ends up in extortion cannot be less”, Mr. Clement Ogbeche, a public affairs analyst disclosed.

According to him, even if a public official is suspected to be corrupt, it is not the duty of the CSOs to probe him. “Not only that their approach is full of libel and defamation, why should a civilian call for the suspension of a duly appointed official?” Mr Ogbeche was confident that in no time, the racketeers would be arrested.

In his remarks, a leading CSO operator based in Lagos, Mr. Thomas Agbontean, cautioned security agencies not to fall prey to these fraudsters. “Anyone caught doing so will automatically lose their job”, he warned.

He then called on members of the public to be wary and report suspects straight to the genuine law enforcement agents while calling on government appointees to join ranks and smash the racket.

Global News Network Correspondent
Global News Network Correspondenthttps://globalnewsnetwork.com.ng
GNN is a News blog based in Nigeria to educate, inform and Analyse issues of interest like Politics, Health, Solid Minerals, Energy and Power, Transportation, Defence and Security, Sports and Entertainment to our teeming audience. Stories are generated by seasoned veteran Editors and Journalists. We Say It As It Is.

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