Monday, April 29, 2019 8:33 pm
The National Council for Arts and Culture (NCAC) has called for an adequate probe into the nationalities of individuals involved in fraudulent acts in other countries alleged to be Nigerians.
Its Director-General ( D-G) Mr Olusegun Runsewe’s call is contained in a statement released by his spokesman, Mr Frank Meke on Monday in Lagos.
He said that it was not true to have referred to all the fraudsters as being Nigerians.
He urged the governments of such countries where the frauds were committed to conduct thorough investigations to ascertain the nationalities of those fraudulent individuals.
He said that he was sad at the emerging global outcry about Nigerians caught and paraded abroad for drug- related offences and internet frauds in the past three weeks.
He described the disturbing trend as a locust attack against the image of Nigeria and Nigerians.
The NCAC boss said that the ugly development should not tear asunder the fabric of the Nigerian cultural unity.
” There must be a national probe to truly find out the true identity of the alleged offenders and determine if the Nigerian passports in their possession are genuine and the holders truly are Nigerians.
” The coincidence and the space of time within which these negative occurrences happen are very suspicious.
“The events came virtually a week after the other and Nigeria is being branded as a nation of desperate and fraudulent people.
“This is despite the attempts at home to discourage sundry crime and corruption.
” The time has come to properly investigate the true identities of the so-called paraded Nigerians caught for drugs in Saudi Arabia and those bursted in Dubia and, recently, in the United States of America,” he said.
He said that as a Nigerian, the mere mention of any Nigerian caught in this act should be seen as damaging to the country’s image and the Nigerian passport.
” All hands must be on deck to curb the development as none of our diverse cultural expectations approves and encourages defiant behaviours of any kind,” he said.
The NCAC boss promised to suggest to the Minister of Foreign Affairs how to curb such vices that could lead to national embarrassment.
Runsewe, however, sàid that he was surprised at the silence of all major stakeholders in the nation who should have condemned the development.
He said that Nigerian leaders were known to always openly condemn such vices and proffer solutions that could end such malaise.
He noted that such vices could set the country’s social and economic prospects backwards
He said that if the fraudsters should be found to be from Nigeria, they should be made to face public disgrace for embarking on such dark ventures.
” Though, the trend is unbecoming but the ease at which other African persons access our national passports despite the hard work of the Nigerian Immigration Service to improve on its features against illegal duplication beats the mind,” he said.