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How underage boys open accounts, get drivers license for fraud –EFCC

 

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has revealed how underage boys, who are into internet fraud, popularly called ‘yahoo yahoo’, do age declaration, to enable them open bank accounts and get driver’s licenses to expend their proceeds from the crimes.

Consequently, the commission has vowed to go after government agencies and individuals that issue the papers for the fraudulent declarations.

The Zonal Director, EFCC, in charge of Edo, Delta and Ondo States, Effa Okim, made the disclosure in Benin City during a courtesy visit to the Edo State Council of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), led by Comrade Festus Alenkhe. He also disclosed that Edo State was second to Lagos in terms of convictions, despite the small size of the state.

Okim stated that parents, who normally claim that their children are underage when convicted, would also go in for it for their complicity in the forgery of documents.

“Crime, what we call yahoo yahoo, is visible in our streets. When you walk on our streets, when you visit our hotels per second, you see these boys, and it is so visible that it is disturbing, and in addition to being visible, the statistics that we have is that Edo is after Lagos in terms of conviction; it calls for concern because, in terms of size, Edo is not, but look at the slant on the level of convictions, it is not a good reputation, and, for me, Edo is too great in the Nigerian history to be reduced to that level in terms of criminality.

“When you hear that a 12-year-old boy has been sent to jail; that, in law, he is not supposed to go because he is underage, but it happens here often because they go and agree with some authorities and do age declaration, stating that they are 18, just to enable them to open account and put their criminal structures in place and, at the end, when they are arrested, their father will come and say their children are underage.

“We are asking them, where were you when he got his driver’s licence? Where were you when your underage son opened an account because, in the Nigerian law, an underage cannot open an account. Where were you when your son was spending money in an irresponsible manner?”

The EFCC Zonal Director said the commission is in line with its mandate and vision and ready to partner with the media “to reduce the visibility of crime on our streets”.

In his response, Alenkhe urged the new zonal director to maintain an open door policy to always make information available to journalists.

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