Detectives attached to Area J Police Command, Ajah/Lekki, Lagos State, are trying to unravel the cause of the friction between a China-based Nigerian businessman and a lady, who claimed to be his lover. The man, Friday Ede, 40, has accused the lady, Amaka Igene, 32, of fraudulently collecting N40million from him, under the guise of trying to buy property for him. The lady however retorted that she didn’t and never duped him.
According to Amaka, she used the money Ede sent to her to buy property. Ede denied being Amaka’s lover, stressing that there was only business between them. He said that there was never any time he proposed marriage to her. While Amaka insisted that Ede paid her flight to China to spend a romantic two weeks’ vacation with him, Ede said that Amaka came to China with another guy, whom he presumed was her lover.
Ede was so angry over the alleged fraud that he flew in from China and went to Area J Police Command to lodge a complaint against Amaka. Ede accused Amaka of diverting money given to her to acquire property for him. Apparently not satisfied with Amaka’s explanation, Ede returned to Nigeria.
According to his calculation, the woman fleeced him N40 million. Recollecting the genesis of his relationship with Amaka, Ede said that Amaka’s elder brother, Kingsmate Igene, was introduced to him by a friend based in Holland. His Holland friend told him that Kingsmate had property in Nigeria.
When Ede was finally linked up with Kingsmate, the latter told him that his sister, Amaka, living in Nigeria, was an estate agent and could get good property for him. Ede narrated: “A friend of mine, who is based in Holland introduced Kingsmate to me. He said that Kingsmate had landed property, which he wanted to sell in Lagos, Nigeria. My friend in Holland said he would have bought the property, but he didn’t have money.
He persuaded me to buy it. He later introduced me to Kingsmate.” He said that after he was persuaded to buy the land, he contacted his friend Chika in Lagos, Nigeria and begged him to assist him by going over to inspect the said property. Chika later called to say the property was genuine. Ede immediately paid N6 million into Amaka’s account, through Kingsmate.
Ede said: “After seeing the receipt of the first property, I was satisfied. But crisis started between us after they duped me through another property, which I bought for another purpose. After the first transaction, Kingsmate told me that if I needed another property, I should contact Amaka. I immediately told him that I didn’t know her.
I told him I couldn’t do business with her.” Ede said that a month after the conversation with Kingsmate, his phone rang one day and the caller was Amaka. She said she could assist him to get another property, somewhere better than the last site, where the first property he bought from her brother was sited.
She told him that the property he bought from her brother was not close to the road. Ede remembered: “Thereafter, we settled the issue and moved on. I asked Amaka to get me another property so I could start another building.
She later called me that she got a better place for N12.5m. She said the property was located at Idi-Agbon area of Ajah. I paid the money; but to my greatest surprise, what I saw on the receipt she showed me was N11m. She collected money for lawyer, consultation and Omo onile. “But before the second transaction, Amaka did not give me the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) of the property I bought from his brother.
All she showed me was the receipt of payment for the property.” According to Ede, whenever he demanded for the C of O, Amaka would parry the question. He said that Amaka told him that to get C of O, has become difficult since Muhammadu Buhari became president of Nigeria. “She said she was unable to process the C of O at Alausa, Ikeja.
On each land she bought for me, I paid about N2.5m for survey plan,” said Ede. He continued: “Amaka and her brother, Kingsmate, were able to dupe me because I believed in them. We’re from the same Ebonyi State. The total money they collected from me was 40m. This money is my sweat. I don’t know where to start from now.”
Stating her own side of the story, Amaka said: “Sometimes last year, my brother Kingsmate, who is based in Holland, called me. He said that he needed money for a business. He said that the only way to raise the money was to dispose his property, which was at Abidjan community of Ajah. “My brother later called me that one of his friends, based in China, would send someone in Nigeria to inspect the property for him. Later, the person, Chika, called me.” She said that after Chika inspected the property, he told her that his friend, Ede, would like to marry her.
She said she was shocked. She said: “After Chika introduced me to Ede, we started chatting. Ede then proposed to me. He asked me to send my pictures to him. It was through our conversation that he told me he has a property he was working on in Ebonyi State. I used to assist him in paying the workers until the building was completed.”
Amaka further added: “After assisting him to complete his house in Ebonyi State, he asked me to get him a property, where he could build a school. I consulted a lawyer, who got four plots of land at Molete area of Ajah for N16m. When I bought the land, which was meant for the school, I sent pictures of the land to him.
But before then, we were already planning to wed in December. Ede later called me; he said that I should look for a land where we could build, so that after our wedding, we would have somewhere to live.”
Amaka said that she bought the land for N11m. She also took pictures of the land and sent to Ede for confirmation. She said that it was in appreciation of all she did for him, that he asked her to come over to China. Ede allegedly paid for all the travel expenses. She said: “I spent two weeks in his house before returning to Nigeria. I didn’t dupe him. All the money he claimed he gave to me, I used judiciously! I’m not a fraudster.”