That home-seekers fall victim to tenancy scam by fake landlords, housing agents or a family member in need of quick cash in Lagos Nigeria as anywhere else in the world is no news. However, people still try to believe they are immune yo such con.
Monday in the Alapere area of Ketu Lagos became the home of spectators as scores of prospective and obviously duped tenants stormed a building of 13 mini-apartments at No 59, Oriola Street, Alapere-Ketu, Lagos a fully occupied building to demand for the right to occupy it, claiming to have paid hundreds of thousands of naira to certain individuals who had posed as those in charge of the building.
Trouble started on Sunday night when rumours spread that the building in question was already fully occupied. Subsequently, those who arrived on Monday had to confront those already occupying the apartments, who also claimed that they were legal occupants. The landlord and the agents who had collected money from people switched off their phones and disappeared without trace.
It was gathered that the house belongs to a certain Alhaji Ishola Salawudeen, who was said to have issued receipts which ranged from N200,000 to N500,000, to the prospective tenants and had given his address as 59, Oriola Street, Alapere-Ketu.
When narrating his ordeal to newsmen, a 69-year old Mrs Mariam Eboigbe, said, “I paid N400,000 for a mini-flat and I was asked to come and get my key today (Monday), only to find out that I have been scammed. The ‘landlord’ is nowhere to be seen.”
Another tenant, who identified himself as Owoyomi Aderemi, also said he had paid N205,000, as a year rent for a mini-flat, but he was stunned to find out that he had been swindled.
“I don’t know what to do now, and I don’t even have any idea where the developer or landlord lives,” he lamented, while displaying his receipts of payment.