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Japa: Over 1,000 Nigerians Scammed With Fake UK Jobs, Lost $10,000 Each – IOM



The United Nations Migration Agency, International Organisation for Migration, IOM, has advised potential migrants to be cautious of a syndicate, who specialises in offering fake employment letters to Nigerians seeking to work in the United Kingdom, UK.

Urging them to seek out proper information before embarking on any migration, the IOM disclosed that over 260,000 Nigerians had approached it in 2023, seeking guidance on how to migrate through regular or approved routes and as well as undergoing Pre-Departure Medical Health Assessments.

It said no fewer than 1,000 Nigerians were currently stranded in the UK having gotten visas based on the fake employment letters procured for them, only to get to the respective organisations in the UK and then denied acceptance because the letters did not emanate from those organisations.

IOM’s Chief of Mission, Mr. Laurent De Boeck, disclosed this at a news conference, yesterday in Abuja.

According to him, some of the victims lost as high as $10,000 each, in their desperate attempts to secure foreign jobs.

He said they are currently stranded in the UK because some of them lacked the means to come back while some were ashamed of coming back to their families.

“There are some of them who lost over $10,000 only to be given fake employment letters which allowed them to get visas. They get there, present the letters and the organisations would tell them that the letters did not emanate from the organisations. Over a thousand people are affected,” he stated.

De Boeck added that IOM was working with partners to repatriate thousands of persons, including Nigerians, from Tunisia, which had recently placed a ban on migration.

He said the IOM was working extensively with Italy to develop regular pathways for qualified Nigerians and that it would also engage other countries like Spain, Belgium, France and others.

On displacements, De Boeck said there had been about 30 percent annual increase for the past five years in many states of the North West.

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Noting that Zamfara remained the most impacted in this regard, he said the incident of banditry and other crimes were fueling the increase.

“In Kano, people are displaced within and there are others who have migrated, which is why our offices in Libya and Niger have more migrants originating from Kano,” he stated.

He said in 2023, IOM played a crucial role in addressing the shelter needs of 71,666 individuals affected by conflicts and environmental hazards.