No fewer than 300 victims of accommodation scam have called on the Lagos State governor, Akinwunmi Ambode and the Ministry of Justice to assist them in recovering their money from the landlord and agent after defrauding them of about N50 million on a said property.
The victims, who paid for a newly constructed 16-flat apartment, situated at No. 16, Mojisola Street, Ifako-Ijaiye area of Lagos, alleged that the landlord, Mr. Hakeem Olarenwaju Garba and his agent, identified simply as Engr. Ayinde, scammed them of the said property after making complete payment.
The aggrieved victims said they made payments to the landlord and agents who were present at the said property when it was under construction, in which they were instructed to come on July 22, 2018 to pick up the keys to their different apartments.
They noted that before the stipulated date, concerned residents on the street informed the victims that people had already occupied all the apartments, stressing that calls put through to the landlord and agents were not answered, neither were they seen.
Explaining the situation to The Guardian, spokesperson of the victims, Richard Ekoro, said “in their quest to live in a nice apartment, they chose to pay for the house despite being under construction, adding that some made payment as far back as last December, while some made payments between January and June this year, with hope of moving in after completion.”
All the victim were with issued receipts given to them by the agent and signed by the landlord, which states that they have completed the payment for their apartments.
The Guardian learnt that Garba was imprisoned for the crime, after which he was charged to Magistrate Court 1 Yaba, for the hearing by the Zone 2 Police Headquarters. He was later granted bail with the provision of N1 million and three sureties. The victims, who learnt that the magistrate and high courts are on vacation, expressed fears that the sitting may no longer hold.