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Turkey Deports 103 Nigerians

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The Federal Government has received no fewer than 103 Nigerians deported from Turkey over alleged migration-related issues such as expired visas and irregular migration, among others.

Alhaji Tijani Ahmed, the Federal Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI), stated this on Friday evening, during the deportees’ profiling in Abuja.

Represented by Amb. Catherine Udida, the Director of Migration Affairs in the commission, Ahmed said that the commission expected 110 deportees but received 103, all males.

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“Some of them have been in the deportation camp for some months, and now that they are here, we are hoping to follow up on all the allegations gathered in their profiling.

“We will go through the profiling forms, because some of them have said that their passports were seized.

“We are going to follow up with the Turkish authority, because the passports are still the property of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” he assured.

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Similarly, Mr Bashir Garga, the North-Central Zonal Coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), assured the returnees of government’s readiness to support them through collaborative efforts of all relevant agencies.

However, some of the deported Nigerians have denied any wrongdoings.

One of the victims, Mr Arinze Stone, said that Turkish authority arrested and detained him in the camp for about six months, adding that he had been living in Turkey for quite some years doing business.

“They were arresting people whose paper are not yet out or just expired,” he said.

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He alleged that it was since the European Union started paying Turkey for illegal immigrants, that the government stopped issuing and renewing resident permits.

READ ALSO: NCoS Dismisses Controller, Two Others For Trafficking Illegal Items, Forgery

Each day, the European Union pays 120 Euros per head of immigrants in the Immigration Camp.

“Ever since I had been in Turkey, I always had my resident permit renewed. It just got expired and the Turkish authority collected 700 euros from me for tax and insurance and then cancelled the renewal,” he explained.

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Stone added that the deportation fee of about 2,500 Euros that was supposed to be given to each victim was not paid.

Another victim, Mr Moses Emeh, said he had a registered company in Turkey which had been functioning for more than eight years.

“I also have a resident permit, which was forcibly cancelled but I had earlier planned to convert it into a working permit.

”I don’t know where to start from. But I believe this is a diplomatic issue and I trust our foreign affairs minister to follow it up.

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“I also think that they should have a sensitisation programme for Nigerians still living over there in Turkey because the Turkish government is not being sincere and transparent with us,” Emeh stated.

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He narrated that he was arrested and put in a dungeon for 11 months and three weeks.

“I was told that If I did not sign the deportation documents, I would have to stay in their custody for one year to two years, after which I could be released and given immigration documents to sign, then be reintegrated into the system. But, they never fulfilled that.

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“I also know that occupying a territory, without a permit is a crime, but mine was forcibly terminated twice, and I took the case to court.

“Since my case was already in court and the court was yet to preside over my case, I don’t think it is right for them to deport me,” he added.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the returnees were given some dignity kits, starter packs and stipends to enable them to travel to their respective places.
(NAN)

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Meta Deletes 63,000 Accounts In ‘Yahoo Boys’ Crackdown

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Meta Platforms Inc., the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, has removed 63,000 accounts associated with the notorious “Yahoo Boys” scam group, the company announced in its Q1 2024 Adversarial Threat Report on Wednesday.

The accounts, deleted over the past few weeks, were used for financial sextortion scams and distributing blackmail scripts. Meta reported that a smaller network of 2,500 accounts, linked to around 20 individuals, primarily targeted adult men in the United States using fake identities.

Meta said it identified and disabled these accounts through a combination of advanced technical signals and comprehensive investigations, enhancing its automated detection systems.

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“Financial sextortion is a borderless crime, fueled in recent years by the increased activity of Yahoo Boys, loosely organised cybercriminals operating largely out of Nigeria that specialize in different types of scams,” the social media giant stated.

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It added, “We’ve removed around 63,000 accounts in Nigeria attempting to target people with financial sextortion scams, including a coordinated network of around 2,500 accounts.”

“We’ve also removed a set of Facebook accounts, Pages, and groups run by Yahoo Boys—banned under our Dangerous Organizations and Individuals policy—that were attempting to organize, recruit and train new scammers,” the company explained.

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During the investigation, Meta said it found that most scammers’ attempts were unsuccessful, though some had targeted minors. These cases were reported to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

Meta revealed that it also shared information with other tech companies via the Tech Coalition’s Lantern program to help curb these scams across platforms.

READ ALSO: FG Slashes Allowances Of Stranded Nigerians On Scholarship In Russia The Federal Gov

Further, the parent company of Facebook said it removed around 7,200 assets in Nigeria, including 1,300 Facebook accounts, 200 pages, and 5,700 groups that were providing scam-related resources.

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These assets were found offering scripts and guides for scams and sharing links to collections of photos for creating fake accounts, it expounded.

Since this disruption, Meta’s systems have been actively blocking attempts from these groups to return, continually improving their detection capabilities.

The company noted that it has also been working closely with law enforcement, supporting investigations and prosecutions by responding to legal requests and alerting authorities to imminent threats.

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The social media giant stated that its efforts extend beyond account removal.

“We also fund and support NCMEC and the International Justice Mission to run Project Boost, a program that trains law enforcement agencies around the world in processing and acting on NCMEC reports.

“We’ve conducted several training sessions so far, including in Nigeria and the Cote d’Ivoire, with our most recent session taking place just last month,” the firm revealed.

To protect users, especially teens, Meta disclosed that it has implemented stricter messaging settings for users under 16 (under 18 in certain countries) and displays safety notices to encourage cautious behaviour online.

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READ ALSO: FG Slashes Allowances Of Stranded Nigerians On Scholarship In Russia The Federal Gov

Last week, Meta was fined $220m by Nigeria’s Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission for multiple violations of data protection laws linked to WhatsApp.

The investigation, initiated in May 2021, found that Meta’s privacy policies infringed on users’ rights, including unauthorized data sharing and discriminatory practices.

Meta plans to appeal the decision, arguing that it disagrees with the findings and the imposed penalty. The FCCPC aims to ensure fair treatment of Nigerian users and compliance with local regulations.

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FG Slashes Allowances Of Stranded Nigerians On Scholarship In Russia The Federal Gov

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The Federal Government has announced a slash in allowances of foreign scholars who are currently studying in Moscow, Russia.

This is contained in a letter dated July 23, 2024, issued to the scholars’ association in country by the Federal Scholarship Board under the Federal Ministry of Education.

The students are studying under the Federal Government’s Bilateral Educational Agreement Scholarship, which is for the purpose of education exchange between Nigeria and the other countries.

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The letter, which was signed by the Director of the Federal Scholarship Board, Ndajiwo H.A., on behalf of the Minister of Education, Prof. Tahir Mamman reads, “A: FG slashes allowances of Nigerian foreign scholars over hardship”

According to the letter, the monthly allowances were slashed from $500 to $220; the graduation allowance from $2500 to $2000; and the PG research allowance was slashed from $1,000 to $500.

The total for the payments initially paid was $5,650 per student but will now be $4,370 but allowance for health insurance, pilot allowance and Medical allowance remains $200, $700 and $500 as before.

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READ ALSO: Plane Crashes On Takeoff In Nepal With 19 Aboard

The letter reads: “The Scholars’ Association is hereby notified that due to the prevailing economic situation, the payment mandate for the BEA scholars’ allowances will be as per the new adjustment.”

“The balances for the years 2023 and 2024 owed to scholars will be paid as soon as the funds are made available,” the letter reads.

Meanwhile, reports has it that the scholars have not been paid for close to eight months and have endured financial strain due to the delay in receiving their stipends.

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BREAKING: SGF, NSA, Ministers In Emergency Meeting Over Planned Nationwide Protest

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The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, George Akume, is currently meeting with ministers over the planned nationwide protest against economic hardship.

READ ALSO::Four Suspected Cultists Arrested With Arms In Edo

The meeting, which is taking place behind closed doors, has all the over 40 ministers in President Bola Tinubu’s cabinet in attendance.

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Some of the Ministers spotted are Nyesom Wike (FCT), Yusuf Tuggar (Foreign Affairs), Zephaniah Jisalo (Special Duties), Tahir Mamman (Education), and Abubakar Bagudu (Budget and Planning).

Others are Wale Edun (Finance), Mohammed Idris (Information), Bello Matawalle (Defence), David Umahi (Works), and the National Security Adviser (NSA) Nuhu Ribadu, amongst others.

Recall that the President had earlier on Tuesday pleaded with Nigerians to shelve the #EndBadGovernance protest slated to commence on August 1.

The protest against economic hardship, organized by faceless persons, has gained traction on social media and is scheduled to hold across the 36 states of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

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Details shorly…

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