• Opinion
  • Updated: March 23, 2023

How Ekweremadu’s Case Signifies Nigerian Politicians, Yahoo Boys Are The Same

Yahoo boys are cyber criminals and inumane fraudsters who trade their country’s image for money. They are no different from some Nigerian politicians who forgo the country’s corporate image for their personal or family gains.

When the BBC wanted to report the organ trafficking case levelled against Nigeria’s former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, it said “a senior wealthy Nigerian politician", his wife and a medical middleman have been found guilty of an organ-trafficking plot after they brought a 21-year-old man to the UK from Lagos.

For any right thinkking Nigerian, there is no any other degrading cluster of words to describe Nigeria, its political system, the kinds of leadership it has and the brand of incompetent people that run its politics than the lede used by the international news agency.

This is the same national ignominy that we believe cybercriminals and yahoo boys are bringing to Nigeria, painting the giant of Afrca black on a global scale nand denting our chances of national relevance.

So, it is safe to say that as Nigerians go hard on yahoo boys with the energy that not all Nigerian is a cybercriminal, we need to confront politicians piloting or have piloted our affairs constructively to stop indicating that Nigeria is a country packed with “apes in human bodies” like the early novelists who have written about Nigeria, Africa and the black race have put us.

An attempt to liken some of Nigerian politicians to yahoo boys is not wide off the mark considering that Senator Ike Ekweremadu, 60, his wife Beatrice, 56, and Dr Obinna Obeta, 50, were convicted of conspiring to exploit the man for his kidney, in the first such case under modern slavery laws just to save the couple's daughter, Sonia, who is only 25.

Like Nigerian yahoo boys who defraud unsuspecting nationals just to feed their appetites, the london court has found out that Senator Ikeremadu brought a street trader to the UK to provide a kidney in an £80,000 private transplant at the Royal Free Hospital in London.

Much worse, they offered a whooping £7,000 and promised opportunities in the UK for helping, and that he only realised what was going on when he met doctors at the hospital.

The most popular version of yahoo yahoo is dating scams.

Individuals across the world would think they have met a virtual better half not knowing he or she is a thief masquerading as a love bird until the yahoo boy hoodwinks the victim.

There is an element of deciet in Ikeremadu's activities and that of yahoo boys soiling Nigeria's international reputation.

Reports have it that Sonia, Ekeremadu's daughter, has a debilitating illness and remains on weekly dialysis, needing an out-of-the box treatment to breathe hope and life into her, which is quite sad.

But it brings us back to the argument of Nigerian cybercriminals who would say worlds like, "We delved into fraud when our parents were critically ill and we couldn't get a job".

They are just not enough reasons.

While it is lawful to donate a kidney, it becomes criminal if there is a reward of money or other material advantage.

The Ekeremaudus could have gone about their deal to save their daughter but are desperate to buy life for their daughter, which does not sit well with the London authorities or Nigerian reputation.

This piece is not to make mockery of the desire of a family to save their daughter (like some Nigerians might see it) but to give every reader a moment if sombre reflection that some Nigerian politicians are beginning to act like the desperate yahoo boys we all criticise. 

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Yusuf Adua
Yusuf Adua

Yusuf Adua is an investigative journalist passionate about politics, solution-based reporting and f...

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