Saturday, May 25, 2019

The Boy Abducted to Guide Blind Beggars in Nigeria

Picture of the boy and his mother at a tender age

Samuel has no recollection of the day he was abducted, aged seven, from his family home in the northern Nigerian city of Kano. Although he came from a large family - his father had 17 children by four wives - Samuel was on his own with a nanny that day. His family was told he had gone outside to ride his bicycle. They would not see him again for another six years.

The Search

"There is nothing we didn't do to try to find him," his older sister Firdausi Okezie recalls. Then aged 21, she was not made aware of his disappearance at first. Her brother had always enjoyed rushing to answer the phone and speak with her when she called home from university. But when other members of the household began answering it when she rang, she suspected something was wrong. After her classes one afternoon, Firdausi travelled home unexpectedly and her father, an architect and hotelier, was forced to reveal the heart-breaking truth: Her favourite sibling had been missing for more than a month. At first, my father had the nanny arrested, but after investigations, they let her go," Firdausi says.

They also tried to hide the news from Samuel's mother, who was divorced from his father, for as long as possible. Every time she called from her new home in a different city, they would conjure different excuses. Eventually, an uncle was assigned the unenviable task of telling her. In addition to extensive police investigations, the family placed adverts in newspapers and sent out search parties to comb the streets. 
They checked ditches in case he had been the victim of a hit and run, and even consulted Muslim spiritual priests, known as “malams”.

In time, her father asked the family to accept that their brother was dead - they had done the best they could.

The Scream

Firdausi refused to give up. She dedicated her university thesis to her missing brother and a year after graduating, she moved south to Lagos in search of work. She converted to Christianity and started attending Winners Chapel - one of Nigeria's mega churches based in Ogun state just outside the city. Every December, the church holds a five-day gathering of its members from all over the world. During the event, known as Shiloh, interested members of the congregation are allocated free stands to display their goods and services within the church premises. Still without a job in December 2000, Firdausi applied for a stand to sell some tie-dye fabrics her mother had made.

While waiting for a carpenter to help set up the display, she sat on a chair and placed her head in her lap for some rest. That was when she heard a beggar appealing, in the name of Allah, for spare change. Firdausi looked up. This beggar had his hand firmly planted on the left shoulder of a boy who was dressed in a tattered brown tunic and undersized trousers. Firdausi screamed—the haggard boy guiding the beggar was her lost brother.

The kidnap

Samuel, now aged 13, cannot recall exactly how he was stolen from his family: "All I remember is the train journey."

He was taken to a one-armed woman who lived on the outskirts of Lagos in an area mostly occupied by disabled beggars. The woman hired him out to blind beggars for 500 naira (approximately $5 or £2.50 at the time) per day. The sight of blind men and women being led around by boys and girls is common on many streets in Nigeria - especially in dense traffic where they usually tap on car windows, or around churches and mosques. Only Samuel lived with the woman, sleeping on a mat in her shack. Over the years, he says about five others boys turned up to live with other women in the same yard, each hired out to blind beggars.

Samuel suspects that something must have been done or given to him during that time because he does not recall ever thinking of his family during that period, or wondering what had become of them.

"I am not sure I had emotions then," he says. "Just a zombie that knew he had to wake up and lead a beggar out. Make money; eat food and sleep, and the same routine the next day.”

He lived like a slave. Different beggars hired him for a period of anything from a week to a month. At the end of each day, Samuel and the beggar slept alongside others in various public spaces. If a beggar enjoyed working with him, they hired him again for another period.
"I was like a slave," he says. "I couldn't say I wanted to go and do anything. I had to be around always." As he was always on the move, Samuel made few friends, only occasionally playing with the children of other beggars he bumped into in the evenings. Sometimes people gave them food while they were out begging. At other times they hung around restaurants and ate the leftovers or scavenged in dustbins.
"I was always hungry. During the daytime when you work, you hardly sit down to eat," he recalls.
"I didn't feel the beggars were bad. They wake up, beg, the way people wake up and go to work."

Day after day, Samuel walked from one end of Lagos to the other with a beggar's right hand gripping his shoulder. Sometimes, they trekked to neighboring states or across the border to Benin. If the beggars received news of potential benefactors gathered somewhere, they told Samuel and he took them there by bus.

"There were times when you get so tired and you start bypassing people, but blind people are very sensitive - their hearing - so they pick up sound. Sometimes they would twist your shoulder and say: 'There is someone there. Why are you moving away?'
"They try to make as much money as they can.

The Miracle

In December 2000, a beggar he was guiding heard news of the programme at Winners Chapel where they ran into his sister. At first, Firdausi was too shocked to reach out and touch her brother - who can still recall her scream. "I fell down on the floor," she says.
Samuel looked gaunt, his right shoulder was significantly tilted and he appeared dumb, not speaking a word. The sight caused Firdausi to burst into tears.

"It took a while but I knew that she was someone I knew - that this person was someone related to me," Samuel says.

Soon a crowd gathered and drawn by the commotion, church officials also arrived. They managed to make sense of Firdausi's barely coherent joy and decreed that it was a "miracle" worth sharing with the entire congregation. They ferried Samuel to a corner and gave him a quick wash. They found him fresh clothes to wear and rushed them both to the stage of the 50,000-seat auditorium where Firdausi was given a microphone. In tears, she narrated how she had just found her brother who had been missing for six years. Firdausi recalls how the entire congregation leapt out of their chairs in shouts of praise and thanksgiving.

--BBC Africa. Written by Adaobi Tricia Nwaubani

Top of Form

About me: Omoruyi Uwuigiaren

Dive into my pool of splendour. It is a tragedy to remain in a world you cannot control and all the more tragic if you do not have control over your own life. People who have surrendered leadership of their lives to others are always at the mercy of those they serve.

Omoruyi Uwuigiaren is a former cartoonist turned writer. When he was a kid, writing was the last thing on his mind. He loved music and composed rap songs for his high school band. After school, he wanted to pursue a career in music. Instead he embraced writing. Thanks to a pastor who encouraged him to write little books and make them available in bookstores.

Ruyi lives in Lagos. Next to his family and friends, writing is his passion and happiness. Today, he writes middle grade adventure fiction and picture books. Some of his published books include The Adventures of Nihu, The City Heroes and other stories from the heart of Africa, The Mystery of Taiwo Da Silva, the Promised Land; I am Jane, Jane the Good Girl, Shadows in a River, Little Okon and the Outside World, Giant in a Hut, and the Little King.

He is the founder of Ruyi’s World of Books and Stories and Human Change Communications Company. His literary works and short stories have appeared on Moronic Ox Literary and Cultural Journal, San Francisco Review of Books, QWERTY Thoughts, the Story of a Writer, the Guardian Newspapers, and the Vanguard Newspapers.

Most of his books are printed (in-house) on either 60 grams or 70 grams bond quality paper by Human Change Communications Company. Covers are printed in full colour on pelican or FBB paper (thick and durable) and laminated. 

The little books and pamphlets are moved to his trimming station where they are folded and bound (by hand) using a commercial-grade saddle stapler. Each book is carefully trimmed using an electric trimmer, making the outside edge crisp (just like perfect bound books have). Every book is neatly packed and new-looking until they are sold. The extra effort means his books are more expensive to produce, but beautiful and highly collectible. Most of his little books are produced in large numbers from 300 to 1000 copies and are usually sold out in three months or less. His books are distributed to primary schools in Nigeria. Quality is key. He builds his books to last.

You can buy some of his eBooks hereApart from his blog where you can read his books, articles and short stories for free, you can also download his free books in PDF, Epub, Kindle and TXT formats here.

Reach him at:

Friday, May 24, 2019

No Black in Heaven by John Chizoba Vincent

White is the colour of heaven,
there are no black people in heaven.
They have sting strength of eel dirt
which heaven cannot accept.
Their black skins breed corruption,

greed and selfishness. 
Black against white, heaven quaked,
I will not weep for their misfortunes;
dislodge their noble grits with fair 
speed, I do not intend to bestir their sleep.

Heaven has no street for rotten bins
neither is there places in heaven
where poor souls stop to urine on a pole
where children are
left to die of hunger and pains and the eyes behold
blood as water. There are no such places
in heaven. I only passed and was never
allowed to enter 'cause I'm Black.
Beneath this glazing memory, find no
solace like a dot of empty bassets.

Black tear-afflicted eyes are uncertain,
never look an African in the eyes even God
lost words watching them glean with smile.
He could not pass judgment immensely,
brilliant gold beams His face as clouds
part their burnt spirits into tensed of gazing
men of deadly deception; black is beautiful,
Of a truth, Satan knew his people at heart.
He peeped from grey curtains for his furlong
and Michael firmament awoke weakness.

The roads to heaven are beautifully built,
Blacks won't be there because they are broken.
The walls of heaven are coated with gold,
Blacks won't be there, their hands grew
green into orchard of blood & dragons breathe.
With the entire gospel psalm in this land,
no single soul sing of black over there,
Sin over the soul of humanity, they seek.
Until light over shadows blackness over here,
spittle of warm blood won't cease in heaven.
If a black is allowed into the warm hands of heaven,
won't they bribe God?

 Meet John Chizoba Vincent...

He's a cinematographer, poet and author several books which include, "Hard Times". His articles, poems and short stories have appeared on Turk Magazine and other online journals. Follow Vincent on Facebook.

LeBron James calls President Trump a ‘Bum’ and thinks Obama was the ‘best ever.’

LeBron James calls President Trump a ‘Bum’ and thinks Obama was the ‘best ever.’ His fans listen to him because he has a talent for basketball and buying huge mansions. The letter writer below, a sports journalist, tells the truth, the truth that applies to most celebrities on the left. It's a GREAT Letter to Lebron from former Houston news reporter Hal Lundgren.

January, 2019

Mr. Lebron James
The Los Angeles Lakers 
2275 E. Mariposa Ave. 
El Segundo, CA 90245

Dear Mr. James:

No one in my circles discusses French Modernist artists. That comforts me. Such a conversation would expose me as an illiterate on French Modernism, just as I am an illiterate on cooking and many other things. When I know nothing on a subject, my mouth stays closed. That's at least one difference in us. You are an economics illiterate. You prove it often. The dishonest ‘reporters’ who cover you want to be your buddy. They won't embarrass you by being honest journalists and treat your words as economics illiteracy. When you call Trump ‘a bum,’ none of them will tell you that statistics rank him as one of our best presidents for black Americans. His tax cuts and freeing us from absurd regulations have resulted in -- after only 24 months -- the lowest unemployment numbers EVER for Hispanic and black Americans, and one of the lowest numbers for women.


Remember during the Trump campaign when Obama mistakenly said, "What's Trump gonna do? Wave a magic wand? These lost manufacturing jobs aren't coming back." Just maybe manufacturing job growth depends on a president who knows what the hell he's doing as opposed to some smiling idiot who was nothing more than a community organizer. As a professional journalist, I cringe at some of Trump’s buffoonery, like repeating sentences and wearing us out with ‘great, fantastic’ and other empty adjectives. He is egotistical and bombastic. He was not my original candidate which just goes to show how wrong I was. But there’s no question his policies have helped many more minority Americans than Obama’s. It's not even close. Today, he’s working to free many black and Hispanic prisoners who, in his opinion, have been in prison too long for relatively minor offenses. 
Are you aware of that effort?

You need to look up Gross Domestic Product, adjusted for inflation, and learn what it means to everyday Americans. Learn what one GDP point means to employment, and see how Trump has kept the numbers climbing. Your  buddy Obama? In addition to being our worst foreign affairs president, and worst military commander-in-chief, his economic numbers all deserved an ‘F.’ He is our ONLY eight-year president who failed to give us at least one 3% or higher year of adjusted GDP growth. EVERY other president achieved at least one year of 4.28% or higher growth. Aided by Vietnam spending, Johnson had an 8.48 year. The best peacetime year, 7.83, belonged to Reagan. And Obama couldn't even score a 3?
Go ahead. Look it up.

You say you would talk to Obama, but not Trump? Why? Is it because you're a star basketball player, and you feel this God-given talent elevates you above speaking to the most powerful person on the face of the earth? How tragic that your ego is so misplaced. Obama had BY FAR the worst debt accumulation record of all our presidents in our history. His economic blunders added about $9 trillion to our debt. NO OTHER PRESIDENT EVEN CAME CLOSE! That's ALMOST as much indebtedness as ALL of the former POTUSes combined! This debt will fall to you, your children, and your grandchildren.

Poor families suffered most during Obama's tenure while he and his family were on VACATION, most of his time in office, on taxpayer funds! His awful job numbers forced a record number of people to receive food stamps. Black household income under Obama fell steeply as black unemployment rose. 
Oh yes, you can look that up, too. But the worst part of what Trump inherited is that Obama, like Bush and Clinton before him, thought bribes and sweet talk were the best ways to deal with North Korea. As the North Koreans neared being able to wipe out your present area of employment, Los Angeles, with a nuclear-tipped missile, Trump became the first president to stand up boldly to this rogue nation. Have you noticed North Korea, because of Trump, has stopped launching missiles over Japan? Noticed North Korea has released political prisoners? Noticed North Korea has returned the remains of U.S. Service members? Absent sturdy spines, Clinton, Bush, and Obama could not approach those major achievements.

Obama naively bribed the planet’s worst terrorist nation, Iran, with what was supposed to become a $150 billion handout, mostly in cash, and without notifying Congress. Did Obama not know many of those U.S. tax dollars would help fund Hamas and Hezbollah terrorism? Of course, he did. He just wanted to appease the masses.

Remember the $800 billion of your, and everyone else's, tax dollars in his early stimulus for ‘shovel-ready jobs?’ Most of those tax dollars went to political cronies. He handed $500 million to Solyndra, a solar company run by HIS boosters. The company soon went bankrupt. Our half-billion in tax dollars vanished with it. (And Trump can't get 5.7 billion to build a wall to keep ALL Americans safe because he is asking to do it LEGALLY with Congress' approval.)
Trump is often obnoxious, but people with courage often have that hang up. Obama always talked big, smiled a lot, then feebly stood by and did nothing. A perfect example was when Putin infringed on Ukraine and annexed Crimea. What did Obama do?
Not one damned thing! One of Obama's most cowardly moves came when he warned Assad not to cross ‘the red line’ in Syria. When Assad ignored Obama’s warning, Obama once again did nothing; which Assad knew would happen. Now please Mr. James, be honest. If this happened with Trump in charge, do you really think this action would have occurred without some retaliation? Hopefully, you're not that naive. It makes me sad that you, as someone with a national voice, would be so ignorant of economics, and also of presidential decisions. I encourage you to do more reading and thinking as you watch the nation's GDP numbers improve, and minority employment rise.

Also See:

Read about ‘Right to Try,’ which frees terminally ill people to sign a lawsuit waiver and take an experimental drug that might not be approved for many years. Democrats fought this sensible plan for years because it would cost them HUGE donations from the drug industry. In order to become at least somewhat intelligently informed, Mr. James, why don't you read about a Navy that Obama left to Trump that struggled with almost half its carrier aircraft unsafe to fly.

Read about Trump's giving the VA the right to fire any employee who neglects or abuses a patient.

Read about Trump's courage in challenging, actually demanding, NATO partners begin to pay their fair share rather than keep mooching off the U.S. You might also read the wisdom of two of the world’s brightest people, black intellectuals Dr. Thomas Sowell and Dr. Walter Williams. They have written numerous books. Sowell and Williams’ integrity, remarkable insights, and clarity of expression cause their common sense to soar off the page to readers, both Black AND white, I might add. Or, you could ignore vital Trump decisions, and remain an illiterate on both presidential achievement and economics. If you disdain knowledge, and keep calling Trump or any other U.S. president a bum (YOUR word) other people with normal intelligence might actually begin to wonder who the real bum is with a bigger mouth than Trump's!

Sincerely, Hal Lundgren

This article took some backbone to write. Every fact listed in this letter is verifiable but, alas, the people who should really read it will probably never do so, and will blindly go on thinking and believing whatever pulp news is fed to them via the liberal media, and will still vote for the so-called ‘free stuff’ until the money runs out. When reality hits them in the face, and in their pocketbook, they will wonder what the hell happened; and you can be sure they'll NEVER believe the truth and how wrong socialism is even with Venezuela a prime example at this very moment. We have fallen to a level I never believed possible in my lifetime. 
So sad!

Culled from Facebook

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Namita Sonthalia-At the Threshold of Love. A Gripping Tale About Love and Friendship Seen from an Indian Perspective. Always a Pleasure

I am an open book. My life and stories are written everyday with enthusiasm, charisma, adventure and mystery. I am a woman of words who finds solace in all of the things that are beautiful. My profession defines me as a writer, content developer, blogger and an author, but I am a dreamer! I believe that what we can think, we can achieve. I am a miracle worker! Be it a work of fiction in the form of my maiden novel, “At the Threshold of Love”, or the theoretical content creation for websites across industries that I spawn.

Ruyi: WOW! Tell us something about your new book
It’s the story of a beautiful Indian girl called Ahaana who meets a lonely man, Ronit. They fell in love and were unaware that it had happened! Would that be enough to rewrite their future? Ahaana runs an event management company called 'The Threshold of Love' with her childhood friend, Ansh. Celebrating love in the lives of her clients, she is unknown to the emotion herself. Only until business tycoon Ronit Malhotra arrived at her doorstep to get his wedding planned. At first sight, she experienced what weak knees are, but was unable to come to terms with the emotion. Soon, Ronit could not ignore Ahaana's charm and energy. When things spiral out of control, Ahaana meets the fun-loving stranger Soham at her cousin's wedding. As an arranged marriage is set between them, will true love and passion make way for the inevitable and rewrite destiny?

Ruyi: Are your books available as eBooks? How involved were you in that process? Do you read eBooks or is it paper all the way?
Yes, my book is available in the eBook format across all platforms. In today’s era, it is vital to stay placed in all the segments where you are looked for. A reader comes in all forms and if they prefer an ebook, they will get that. As a writer, I need to reach out to my readers, wherever they are! About me, my love for books goes a long way back and thus I am partial to paperback. EBooks definitely are a boon though and I have read a number of titles in that format as well.

Ruyi: Which of your book is your favorite?

I have published just one book as yet, At the Threshold of Love! With my second book down the publishing line, I still will be passionately inclined towards my first work.

Ruyi: If any of your books were made into a movie, who would you have as the leading actor?

Wow! If that happened, fifteen years ago I would say Mr. Shah Rukh Khan. But now that would be doubtful. So maybe ZacAfron or RanbirKapoor might do justice to it.

Ruyi: Do you think self publishing is the future of book publishing?

Yes, it pretty much could be. But there is a thing about traditional publishing that goes a long way.

Ruyi: What place does writing or content creation hold in your life? 

I have been writing since as early at 8 years. So it pretty much sums up the value it holds in my life.

Ruyi: That’s interesting, Namita! What is your writing process, or a typical writing day routine? 

I do not have a specific hour at which I write. If it’s professional, then I do delegate a pattern or time table to my work. But in case of my books, it entirely based on when I can be at peace within when on a journey with my protagonists.

Ruyi: What marketing techniques have been most effective for you? 

Digital marketing and simply getting the word about my book out there regularly makes a huge difference. It is important to remind the reader of the options they have that they haven’t yet explored.

Ruyi: What do you think makes a book or content sell? 

Authenticity, emotion, connection, drama, possibility and a lot of other things. It is all about how well you could create an image within the mind of the reader or how you couldn’t.

Ruyi: I quite agree with you. What's the most moving or affecting thing a reader has said to you? 

“I have developed an eternal love for Ronit” (my lead protagonist), a reader once told me.
“Books are my first love, and this book is my soul mate,” said another.

Ruyi: What are your favorite books, and why? 

“Messages in a bottle” by Nicholas Sparks, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” by Roald Dahl, “Anne and the French kiss” by Stephanie Perkins, “Many Master Many Lives” by Dr. Brian Weiss, and my forever favorite, “At the Threshold of Love” by Namita Sonthalia. I connected to these books like none other.

Ruyi: Who are your favorite authors and what do you like the most about them? 

Nicholas Sparks, Dan Brown and Dr. Brian Weiss.

Ruyi: Tell us about the works that you are currently working on and their progress.

I have just completed my second book and it’s underway towards publication.

Ruyi: What challenges do you think are faced by writers and content creators like you, and what's the worst thing about the industry according to you? 

Writing is not the challenge but the journey towards getting your book into the hands of the readers, that is. No matter what potential your book has, there are a zillion more coming out every day. Like Sir Ruskin Bond said, my country is under the threat of have too many writers and too few readers.

 Ruyi: Apart from writing, what goals do you want to achieve in life? 

I just want to stay a good human being who is remembered for living life truly and wholeheartedly.

Ruyi: What message do you want to share with budding writers and content creators? 

Read! Reading opens up windows that one never knew of. It helps you live a life apart from what already captures you. It helps you either expand your senses or take you away on a journey when all you want to do is travel! As a writer, believe in what you write and the moment it comes from your heart, it can never go wrong. Try reading your own work as many times as you can. If you don’t get bored of it, no one else will.

Meet Namita Sonthalia...

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Saturday, May 11, 2019

God Rules in the Affairs of Men by Omoruyi Uwuigiaren

I was at a restaurant last night to eat barbecue and enjoy the beautiful earth. Something strange happened. I told the guy in charge to serve me in a corner outside of the popular spot.

The place was booming, there was music in the air, the atmosphere was great, and they were handing out gift items to their good customers of which I was one. But I was not interested in the gift or the music that a man was expected to dance to. I could hardly maneuver myself and there was no better time than this to rest my good soul. I wanted some privacy. I wanted to be away from the noise. I wanted to be alone.

So the man served the barbecue as I had requested outside of the restaurant. As I quietly enjoyed the beautiful earth under the watchful eyes of the starry sky, one of the waiters approached me. Dark and lanky, cold and strange, the waiter flashed an exaggerated smile at me and said, "Sir, come in and have your gift. We have something special for everyone."

Chewing quietly, I glanced up at him and replied, "I'm okay here. Don't worry about me."

"Okay sir," he bowed himself gently. “That’s fine.” He turned and walked into the restaurant.

The night was good. Everything happened very fast. After I had prevailed upon the meal and there was nothing of substance left on the plate, I rose to my feet, adjusted my body and walked away from the restaurant.

I was to do a shift at the office. Immediately I left the scene, armed robbers struck. Nine heavily built men armed to the teeth hit the restaurant with a dreadful sting. They robbed everyone. Those who tried to resist the assailants were left with injuries. One man in particular had an empty bottle of beer shattered on his head. The attack left a very deep cut on his head.

I heard gunshots as I drifted away but I thought they were fired by the policemen that usually visit the area.

It was a long night. God did not tell me that such will occur. If I had known, I would not have visited at all. He allowed of this to happen so that I will know that He ordered my step. 
Wicked Comic's Interview

If I had listened to the waiter and walked into the restaurant, I wonder what would have been my fate. To cut the long story short, God rules in the affairs of men.

Ghost of Dalmos


Saturday, May 4, 2019

Free Book: Ghost of Dalmos

Ghost of Dalmos

Dalmos was sucked into a world inside of a tree where he tasted misfortune.  It is a tragedy to remain in a world you cannot control and all the more tragic if you do not have control over your own life. People who have surrendered leadership of their lives to others are always at the mercy of those they serve. As Dalmos quests to regain his freedom, he found a powerful man whom he thought would rescue him. But it would have been better if they had never met.

Criminal Code by Omoruyi Uwuigiaren

Omoruyi Uwuigiaren

A smart thief will not tell you that he or she is about to rob you, especially now that the internet has made the world a small place. All they need is a positive response from you. Some people say they cast spell on their victim, but I doubt. Most of the time, the victim is the problem. Some want to make profit without breaking a sweat while others are just naïve and innocent. So they open the door. The human want is insatiable. Unlike the thief who aggressively robs you of your belongings on the highway, the fraudster connects to your need. He uses your need against you. However, some are duped solely because they trust people. They assume every human being on the face of the earth is honest or deserve to be trusted. Life is no bed of roses. Fraud is all about influence. The fraudster connects to your need and strike. Near, far, wherever you are, make sure you verify before committing to whoever connects to your need.

Once they start introducing several formats and professionally linking them together, it means the victim has nearly or fully committed to them. All the victim’s details are in their hands and they will use the details to their advantage. Once you fall into their trap, it will take providence for the victim not to be swindled.

Also read:

You must be able to discern. You are always far enough to decide whether to fall or not. Most people who are prey are either greedy, want to get rich quickly or too carried away to look closely at the details. No fraudster is immune to errors. You are likely going to see their flaws. It stares at you in the face. Some people ignore the red flag because of what they hope to gain while others are just too naive to read the writing on the wall. The fraudster is not all knowing. He’s miserably prone to errors. Always he leaves you with a clue about who he is or what he’s about to do. You cannot encounter a fraudster and not notice some flaws like exaggeration, lies, money, anxiety, frequent outburst of anger (sometimes they abuse you), short fuss, display of idiocy, aggression, domineering tendencies, harsh or foul language, poor grammar, rush, slow to respond to your questions but quick to direct you to do the next thing on his list, sometimes they don’t bother to respond to your query, typographical errors and poorly written letters.

Whatever format the criminal presents to you, he unknowingly leaves trail of errors that should ordinarily give him away. You are to hit the delete button once you are exposed to such emails or messages. Don’t allow it to fester. You are his target. He wants your money and he is ready to do anything to have it. He doesn’t care if you go broke or bankrupt afterwards. So why do you spare him a thought? Why do you think someone with millions of cash under his nose will want to part with it so easily? Why do you want to become a distributor, middle man in a business that you have no knowledge of? Yes, of course. There is no harm in trying. Why not test the credibility of the business or the person before committing your finances?

You are presented with a business that you actually have no knowledge about. I expect a reasonable person to meet a professional in that field and solicit advice. It will save you loads of cash in the long run. The professional will be able to spot the loopholes in the whole package and things that you readily see as inconsequential that would have cost you your life savings. One of the reasons why many people fall into the hands of fraudsters is that they tend to go secret about the deal. They suddenly develop cold feet, and fear that telling anyone including their loved ones and partners would put the deal in jeopardy. They don’t want to be discouraged. They don’t want anyone to share the benefits with them. So they keep the deal to themselves. You only hear of the deal once they are duped.  

We are in a world where vanity is king. Many people want to break even, get rich over night, drive big cars and if possible build castles in the air. The more you channel your effort to your regular job or legitimate course, the lesser the chances of you getting swindled.

Study the dialogue below. It’s between a man and a fraudster. He wanted to swindle the innocent man. This is a very simple format but it will get some unsuspecting people in trouble.

A man called me today. He introduced himself as my former electrician at Iba estate where I live.(I have never lived in an estate or Iba estate. Not to talk of having something to do with an electrician there. That was a red flag.)

Initially I thought it was a wrong number, so I wanted to drop the call but when he called my name and mentioned my wife, I knew I was in for a hard time. (I cannot remember having anything to do with any electrician in the estate.) He said he has relocated to Niger state in far away northern Nigeria and now works with 9mobile, a leading telecommunications company in Nigeria. He wants to buy wire and cable for his company, 9mobile.

Then I asked, "Why do you need me? I don’t know anything about wires and cables. You are an electrician. Why not just go to Alaba Int'l and get the things you want?"

He did not respond to my probe.

Instead, he tried to continue with his gist, hoping that I will hook onto his story. And once you are in, you will be fortunate to get out unhurt. Then he said he is sending his colleague to Lagos with large sums of money and that he wants me to be the sole distributor of cables and wire to 9mobile.

“Me?” I asked, laughing. That sounds nice to any greedy soul, but I was not moved. Hearing the large sums of money made me feel sick and I wanted to quickly get off the phone. But if I do that, I would have missed valuable lessons and experience. So I played along.

“Yes, you, Mr Omoruyi!” he answered.

I smiled and threw out another question, "I hope I will not spend a dime in all of this? I am ready to help you, but I don’t have any cash to spend."

He became angry and yelled at me, "Mr Omoruyi, you went to school? Didn’t you?”

“Yes!” I answered, “I went to school.”

He barked again, “But I just told you that my colleague is coming to Lagos with large sums of money! Please get your pen and paper. I want tell you what to buy with the money and call me back in 3 minutes."

The call dropped.

The underlined words, phrase or sentences above were the errors and loopholes in his conversation with me. They are easy to spot. Who on earth will easily want to part with very huge amount of money, especially to a friend or person that he has not seen for years? No prior contact, no emails and no phone calls to explain his that someone will be visiting me from Niger state. Suddenly you put your mate at the office on the road from the far northern state of Niger to embark on a journey of nearly two or more days to Lagos to buy wire. Why will 9mobile, one of the largest telecommunications companies in Nigeria descend so low that they will require the services of a novice like me to supply wires when they can easily browse the internet and engage companies that can do proper business with them? Again, the distance between Lagos and Niger state is huge. No sane mind will come all the way from Niger state to buy mere wires and cables in Lagos state. Don’t they consider cost, stress and pains it will take them to undertake such trip? You don’t need to come over to Lagos state to purchase wires running into millions of naira. There are companies in Niger state, Kano state or the entire north that can get the load off your back.

The lies, exaggerations, anger and errors were just too obvious. Sadly, there are people who will still fall for such a petty thief. Having considered all of this, I did not return the call.

Author Bio: Omoruyi Uwuigiaren is a Nigerian who writes middle grade adventure fiction and picture books. Some of his books include: The Adventures of Nihu, the City Heroes and other stories from the heart of Africa, the Mystery of Taiwo Da Silva, the Promised Land, Jane the Good Girl, Shadows in a River, the Little Okon and the Outside World, Giant in a Hut and the Little King. He is the founder of Ruyi's World of Books and Stories. His literary works and short stories have appeared on Moronic Ox Literary and Cultural Journal, Town Crier Times, the Story of a Writer, Qwerty Thoughts, the Guardian, and the Vanguard Newspapers. Download free books by the author here.