Some Nigerians have lamented falling victim to fraudsters in a bid to buy slots for recruitment into the Department of State Services.
One of such victims, a young man, Suleiman Umar Bakari, who was trying to get enlisted in the service, said he lost the sum of N1.5million after someone convinced him to pay for a slot allegedly belonging to Mohammed Bichi, one of the sons of the Director-General of DSS, Yusuf Bichi.
According to Bakari, he applied on the DSS recruitment portal in 2020 and sat for the examination at Taraba State University the same year.
However, after the exam, Bakari said he was informed that there were slots given to the DG’s son, which will cost at least N1,500, 000 but there was opportunity to pay N800, 000 in advance.
The aggrieved young man, however, said he didn’t deal directly with the DG’s son but a friend to Mohammed, who also engaged the services of one Jamilu Adi, a staff of the Fire Service in Yola.
Bakari said the assurance he got from the trio made him sell an inherited land in order to pay for the slot.
According to him, he was finally admitted into the Bauchi camp alongside two other persons but were later asked to leave for failure to bring clearance documents from Abuja.
He said he had later returned to the camp to retrieve forgotten documents only to discover that he had been scammed.
He said efforts to get the money back from Mohammed Bichi, Mohammed Bello and Jamilu Adi had proved futile.
He said, “I am Suleiman Umar Bakari. I applied to the 2020 Department of State Services, sat for the examination at Taraba State University, my I.D was DSS/TR/20/385B.
“After the exam, somebody told us that the DG DSS son had a genuine slot, each will cost N1.5million but that we can make an advance payment of N800,000 and above.
”The DG’s son, Mohammed Bichi, made his friend Mohammed Bello take charge while Jamilu Adi, who works with the Fire Service in Yola, was tasked with looking for interested applicants.
“Mohammed Bello told us to come to Bauchi camp for training, and go through Ambassador Ali Daura. We were three in number, Yusuf Isa, Bilkisu Murtala and myself.
“We were ushered into Taraba auditorium, Jazuli was the head of the screening, while one Suleiman stands as a checker. We were told to bring clearance from Abuja, and we told the people doing the work for us.
“I followed a friend to Block A Room 1, and in the dining, I was number 754. We were issued cutleries, cups and plates.
”When I returned in the morning, Jazuli asked me if I came with the clearance, I said no. I surrendered everything to them, at the gate I was told to write my name, state, phone number.
“After two weeks in Bauchi, Jamilu Adi continued to encourage us. Later, I remembered I left my documents in Block A Room 1. I was accompanied by their personnel to come to get the document.
“The second batch already entered the camp at that time, that was when we knew we’ve been scammed. We sought for a refund of our monies but instead, they were telling us that by October, they will refund us.
“Later they said we should wait till diploma set goes camping that they will settle us completely. This was someone who promised to give us by October and now he is saying till diploma.
“I had to sell a piece of land I inherited to raise that money, so that my life may change.”
Another Nigerian, who pleaded anonymity, said he lost N500, 000 to the fraudsters but unlike Suleiman, he was never opportuned to visit any of the camps.
He said a friend, who was also applying to the force, had informed him of the slots for which the duo paid N500, 000 each but never heard again from the scammers, who initially claimed they were officials of the service.
The aggrieved person said, ”I still feel very terrible that I paid that money because ideally we are not supposed to pay for it but I just wanted a system of advantage and it boomeranged.
“My advice to the DSS is to issue disclaimers, warn people against these ”officials” and if possible, try and arrest the perpetrators.”