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Yahoo Yahoo: Concerns as Nigerian higher institutions witness surge in internet scams among students

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Nigerian higher education institutions, including universities, polytechnics, and colleges of education, are witnessing an increasing prevalence of advanced fee fraud, commonly known as “Yahoo Yahoo,” among their students. More students are opting for this risky path to quick wealth in an attempt to impress and outshine their peers on campuses across the country.

Instead of concentrating on their studies, these students choose to deceive unsuspecting victims and use the proceeds to buy luxury cars and socialize with attractive companions while in school. The ostentatious display of wealth by students involved in advanced fee fraud tends to attract other students who aspire to emulate such a lifestyle.

In response to this trend, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has been conducting operations to apprehend students believed to be involved in internet-related offenses. Several higher institutions, including Kwara State University, Obafemi Awolowo University, Akwa Ibom State University, Ladoke Akintola University (LAUTECH), and Olabisi Onabanjo University, have been targeted by EFCC operatives, resulting in the arrests of students suspected of engaging in such activities.

For instance, in April, EFCC operatives arrested 19 students of Akwa Ibom State University in Mkpat-Enin, Akwa Ibom State, on charges related to internet-related offenses. Some of the suspects were allegedly involved in romance scams, fraudulent cryptocurrency transactions, and impersonation. Just last week, approximately 70 students of Obafemi Awolowo University in Ile-Ife, Osun State, were arrested for suspected internet-related offenses.

To address this issue, some institutions, such as Ladoke Akintola University in Ogbomoso, Oyo State, have implemented measures to restrict students from driving or bringing cars to the campus. They have also prohibited tinted vehicles for both staff and students, requiring learner permits to be displayed on the vehicles of novice drivers.

The EFCC has also announced plans to collaborate with university management across the country, recognizing the university environment as a place where youths are shaped both academically and morally. They aim to work together with universities to combat the “Yahoo Yahoo” phenomenon.

The influence of internet fraudsters on other students is a growing concern. It distracts students from their studies, leading to negative academic and moral impacts. Peer influence plays a significant role in this problem, as students are drawn to the lavish lifestyles of fraudsters. Some educators suggest that anti-corruption education should start at an earlier stage of education to instill core values from a young age.

The negative effects of Yahoo boys’ actions extend beyond morality; they can also lead to reckless behavior on campuses, including accidents that harm fellow students. Some believe that the parents of these students are partially responsible for supporting their illegitimate activities.

To combat this issue, punitive measures have been proposed as a way to deter students from engaging in fraudulent activities. Sensitization programs within schools and increased security and surveillance on campuses are seen as important steps in addressing the problem. Ultimately, a multifaceted approach involving education, deterrence, and parental involvement is essential to tackling the “Yahoo Yahoo” menace among Nigerian students.

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PHOTO: Gov Makinde Host Nigeria Police Games

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1: Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde (left) and Inspector General of Police, Olukayode Egbetokun, during the opening ceremony of the 14th Biennial Nigeria Police Games, host by Oyo State Government, held at Adamasigba Stadium, Ibadan. PHOTO: Oyo Gov’s Media Unit.

2: From left, Deputy Governor of Oyo State, Barr Bayo Lawal; Governor Seyi Makinde; Inspector General of Police, Olukayode Egbetokun and his wife Elizabeth, during the opening ceremony of the 14th Biennial Nigeria Police Games, host by Oyo State Government, held at Adamasigba Stadium, Ibadan. PHOTO: Oyo Gov’s Media Unit.

3: Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde (left) take a salute from the Police Mascots, during the opening ceremony of the 14th Biennial Nigeria Police Games, host by Oyo State Government, held at Adamasigba Stadium, Ibadan. PHOTO: Oyo Gov’s Media Unit.

CREDIT: Oyo Gov Media 

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Economic crisis: Find more ways to improve your IGR – President Tinubu to universities

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The Nigerian government has called upon universities in the country to broaden their sources of funding amidst economic challenges. President Bola Ahmad Tinubu made this assertion during the 6th & 7th combined convocation ceremony of Federal University, Dutse, which took place on Saturday.

Speaking through Professor Kabir Bala, the Vice-Chancellor of Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, who represented him at the event, President Tinubu stressed the government’s dedication to facilitating a conducive environment for universities despite resource limitations.

He urged universities to actively explore alternative funding channels, underlining the significance of self-reliance in the prevailing economic circumstances. The President also encouraged universities to seek international funding opportunities for research, advocating for collaborations and the attraction of funds from global sources.

President Tinubu emphasized that government alone cannot shoulder the financial burden of universities, particularly amid economic challenges and competing demands from various sectors. Nonetheless, he reiterated the administration’s commitment to providing the necessary support within the available resources to ensure universities function as pillars of educational advancement and national development.

He further urged universities to pursue innovative strategies for generating revenue and to tap into international research funding opportunities. He assured that his administration remains dedicated to supporting universities in achieving their objectives as outlined in the Renewed Hope Agenda.

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Contempt threat against NLC, TUC leaders over public protest uncalled for – Femi Falana replies FG

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Human rights advocate and constitutional lawyer, Femi Falana, has clarified that the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) have every right to organize the nationwide public protest scheduled for February 27 and 28, asserting that it does not constitute contempt of court.

As a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Falana emphasized that Nigerian workers are entitled to freedom of assembly and expression as enshrined in the country’s Constitution. He urged the federal government, in a strongly worded letter to the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, to ensure maximum security for the workers and to participate in the protest.

In response to the AGF’s threat of contempt charges against the NLC and TUC leaders, Falana’s letter dated February 24 countered the threat, arguing that it lacked legal basis.

Falana pointed out the history of negotiations between the government and the labor unions following the removal of fuel subsidy in 2023, which resulted in court orders restraining the unions from striking. Despite compliance with these orders, the unions challenged them, and the contempt proceedings initiated by the government were subsequently withdrawn.

He highlighted subsequent legal actions initiated by the government against the unions, noting that these actions were contested by the unions on grounds of abuse of court process and lack of jurisdiction. Falana emphasized that since the contempt proceedings were withdrawn, there is no basis for the government’s threat of contempt charges regarding the planned protest.

He cited legal precedents affirming citizens’ rights to protest on matters of public interest without the need for police permits, emphasizing the democratic importance of freedom of speech and assembly.

Falana urged the government to respect these fundamental rights and directed the Inspector-General of Police to provide adequate security for the protesters in accordance with the Police Establishment Act.

In conclusion, he called on the government to reconsider its stance and assured that the protests would be conducted peacefully.

The federal government had previously warned of invoking relevant laws to charge the NLC leadership with contempt if the protest proceeds, citing it as a breach of agreement and a challenge to the court’s authority. The AGF, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, conveyed this warning in a letter to Falana, urging the NLC to abandon the protest to avoid violating the court’s order.

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