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“No one should be a victim after this” –Nigerians react to DUBAWA’s investigation on Odalo

Diverse responses have trailed DUBAWA’s recent investigation on Odalo, a Nigerian Twitter scammer who feigns a heart disease to deceive women for monetary gains.

Many Nigerians have praised DUBAWA’s endeavours, while several others believe that no more individuals should become victims following the release of this report.

On Nov. 4, 2023, DUBAWA published an investigation on a cyber fraudster who uses love tricks to scam women on social media. Famously known as Odalo, Iriodalo Emmanuel Obhafuoso would chat up women and tactically win their affection. After a while, he would cajole them into sending him money to treat heart diseases. To earn trust, Odalo would send a doctored “Echocardiography Report” to his victims as evidence of his heart disease. Riding on the already-established affection, these women would begin to send him thousands of naira just to save his life. 

The report also uncovered Odalo’s history of fraudulent adventures. As an alumnus of the University of Benin Demonstration Secondary School (UDSS), he had confessed to dupping the UDSS 14’ set of over N400,000 for an alleged surgery.

There should be no other victim

Reacting on Twitter, The Last of The Weird Ones (@The_Weird_Chef) questioned her own heart of kindness and has vowed to no longer entertain online assistance requests.

“What about the people he told that he lost his dad? And there was not enough money for him to support (be)cause of the stuff he was going through. He said he was dealing with stuff, and it messed up his mental health. Omo, never again abeg. If you need help, just go to your family,” she wrote.

Another user, Her Faithfull Pet (@alamu01183180), has further cautioned fellow social media users, saying, “There should be no more victims after this.”

Kudos, DUBAWA

In another instance, Tiaraoluwa (@TheOluwabunmi) could not help but appreciate the attention to detail put into the investigation.

“I like how meticulously written this was, and I like that there’s documentation of his romance scam with his full name included. This is so well done,” she said.

Similarly, Adamantanamine (@wired_differen) has expressed contentment with the report.

She said, “I love women so much. The meticulousness put into this and the detailing.”

Recognising the widespread threat posed by unreported internet scams, SunehriLasgidi (@TheFloWilliams) commended DUBAWA’s Simbiat Bakare for unveiling Odalo through the investigative effort.

“We see stories like this on social media, and it just goes away, leaving the perpetrators to lie low for a while, reinvent themselves and continue their scams. Kudos to @NaijaRadFem for investigating and documenting it. We need more of this treatment,” she wrote.

EFCC’s Silence

Section 14(2) of the Nigeria Cybercrime (Prohibition, Prevention, etc.) Act states that “any person who with intent to defraud sends electronic message materially misrepresents any fact or set of facts upon which reliance the recipient or another person is caused to suffer any damage or loss, commits an offence and shall be liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less than 5 years and to a fine of not less than N10,000,000.00 or to both fine and imprisonment.” 

Based on this Act, we observed that the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) had prosecuted romance scammers, as found here and here. However, since the publication of Odalo’s investigation a few days ago, the EFCC has yet to make any public reaction.

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