Sometime in September, my sister hurried home and was excitedly soliloquizing, ” I will buy one land in Lekki. One in owerri and another one close to seme border. I was diluting my garri, milk and sugar quizzically staring at her when she barked “peace! Where is that your calculator? Come and calculate this money for me. 1 million multiplied by 3 divided by 2”. I told her to use BODMAS. She went on to ask which car I wanted her to upgrade to. Benz or G-wagon.
“Are you doing yahoo yahoo?”
“(Laughs) yahoo ke? I joined this winhub network where you put in money and you get half of your principal as interest or even more depending on how much you investing”.
I was disgusted. My garri already looking like spoiled okro soup becos I have never been an advocate of any Ponzi scheme & have never fallen prey to any. I guess I was the only one in Nigeria who didn’t do MMM, Twinkas, ultimate cyclers, claritta and the rest. I always had zero tolerance for Ponzi schemes or its perpetrators. I remember meeting one guy that MMM era. we were getting along & I thought we could finally walk down the aisle until I asked him what business he was into and oga said MMM business. I used one sec to block his silly MMM ass & continued praying that God in his infinite mercies would forgive him for being such a disgrace to his entire lineage.
Anyways, two weeks after she joined the network, my sister, the master of soliloquy began. “this people are for real o. I just tried withdrawing 13k from my dashboard & it worked. Millionaire in a bit mehn “. I would have successfully ignored her quest for attention, but then I remembered my possessed infinix phone and how it would casually go off on its own. How it’d randomly download apps for me without my consent & unmannerly place calls to my contacts especially those I was trying to avoid. I remembered the professional course I wanted to enroll in if only I had the money. I remembered my only 2 surviving 1,500naira wigs &how archaic they now looked. I thought about Linda ikeji & how I’d love to be her banana island neighbour. I wanted to be a millionaire too so I could buy a Benz, G-wagon & probably buy a land in chad. “Peace, remember the pastor said someone from the congregation is going to be a millionaire before the end of 2018″- my subconscious recollected. And at that point, I could swear i heard the voice of the lord say, “verily verily I say unto you peace, join winhub network…”
I asked my sister who introduced her to the scheme & she said it was one of our family friends, Aunty xyz. Aunty xyz had been totally helpful to us in the past. She had gotten me my first job at a micro finance bank where she worked. She was a genuine woman & What other way would Jesus send me these millions if not through a credible woman like aunty xyz?- I laughed hysterically in thought of my future G-wagon.
To join, I just had to go to their website, fill in my details like name, address, account number, bank etc. Choose how much I wanted to invest(20k,50k,100k, 1M). Then, I’d own a dashboard to monitor my investment & returns. I wanted to invest 50k(my entire life savings) so in 2months, I’d be getting 90k (40k interest) which means I’d be paid 1,500 daily and even though the money wasn’t going direct to my account but my dashboard, I only had to click on the withdraw button in my dashboard for the money to be credited into my bank account. there was a message icon in the dashboard too Incase I wanted to chat with them personally.
I registered & they sent me a mail with the account number I would pay to and assured that once I made the payment, it’d reflect in my dashboard. The whole thing seemed legit to me so I rushed to the bank that same day to deposit my one & only 50k into their bank account with my remaining account balance =0.00naira.
I got home from the bank, checked my dashboard but it still said I hadn’t made any investment yet😳. I messaged them at once to explain my predicament but got no reply in 3hrs. I was literally running mad itching my head up and down every 1 second, repeatedly telling myself, “Peace, it is finished”.
I remembered I saw a phone number on their site so I took it, dialed it & a lady who sounded like she just finished 2 cups of hypo & dry gin picked the phone. You should have heard her yoru-igbotic accent. To make matters worse,I could barely hear her becos there was so much noise in the background,worsened by the cry of a child. The child was crying like she hadn’t eaten for days and in-between the child’s untamable cry & my convo with the hypo-voiced woman who assured me my payment would be confirmed, something 4rm my inside kept telling me it was my 50k they would use to buy golden morn for that child, and weed for all the agberos making noise in the background.
“Are these people not suppose to be at their office in one area in Lekki making investments with our money? why does it sound like they are in mushin market selling ogogoro?” I became skeptic. A part of me was already bidding my 50k farewell, but another part of me chose to trust Aunt xyz for She wouldn’t lead me to destruction.
Day after day, the first thing I did every morning even b4 prayers was to check my dashboard to be sure my 1,500naira had been paid in for the day. It continued like that and my favorite song to sing then was ‘Jesus take the wheel, take it from my hands cos I can’t do this on my own’.🎶
Jesus was taking the wheel until one faithful morning when i went to my dashboard & saw a message they sent saying they were having technical issues and so withdrawals would be pending. I told my sister and after she logged into her account, she found the same message. I tried calling the hypo-drinking woman and it was switched off. Called over 20 times and it was still switched off. My sister had been added to their group chat so I took her phone and called the supposed group Admin’s number, it wasn’t going through. My blood pressure level raised to infinity/infinity. I went ahead to call all members of the group chat and lo and behold, none of the numbers went through. Just 2 people plus my aunt’s number went and those two people confirmed they didn’t know about the network neither did they invest. I didn’t know how to start the madness. If to take off my wig before my bra or just run to the main road with peak milk containers tied around my waist. My sister called my aunt and my aunt assured her the technical issue would be resolved in about 2weeks. My aunt had earlier claimed the person who introduced her to the network was part of their tech team so she assured there wasn’t any reason to panic.
Two to three weeks after, withdrawals were still pending, numbers off. My sister would call my aunt and rant. We started to suspect she was one of them bcos even though she claimed her 500k was in the scheme, she was so unperturbed. Her 500k was gone and she wasn’t running mad yet? I was depressed and frustrated. Worst was, I hadn’t even withdrawn 1kobo b4 their said tech issue. My sister had withdrawn 13k and that should be about enough consolation for her. I didn’t even know how to tell my friends bcos most had sternly warned against the scheme.
Soon,every snipper and rat poison I came across was looking like pizza & I didn’t mind digesting. My sister saw my dilapidated state and promised to pay me back my 50k. She deleted my aunt’s number after sending her a text that read,”what you sow you’l rip”. But I later realized my Aunt was only a victim too after I bumped into her one morning and she was looking like Jabez. Frustrated, Unkept and confused. She explained that her so-called friend who worked there had stopped picking her calls & she had no idea where the friend was anymore. She said her salary which used to be over a hundred thousand was now 24k becos the 500k she invested was a loan from her company. She apologized, asked if She could help me influence a position at her office so I could recover my 50k. I said no, gave a wistful smile and left.
I didn’t write about this b4 now bcos i don’t know how to talk about my wound while it still hurts. Thank goodness for the Bible which was my companion & some friends who gave listening ears, if not, y’all would have seen me on instablognaija with caption “unpopular blogger runs mad after losing 50k to a Ponzi scheme”. It was one horrendous event in my life and just so you know how bittered i was, see how I saved their contact on my phone 😢 👇🏻👇🏻
Imagine how I wasted my precious curses on them. People that will die by electrocution. Radarada!