Friday, July 1, 2022

SPECIAL: Investors distraught as Insha Allahu Investment boss disappears

Phony companies continue to take advantage of the harsh economic situation in the country to scam people looking to make extra income.

• May 31, 2021
CEO Insha Allahu Asset Management and Investment Limited, Abdulakeem Arafat Morendayo
Insha Allahu Asset Management and Investment Limited CEO, Abdulakeem Arafat Morendayo

Investors in Insha Allahu Asset Management and Investment Limited have been left stranded as the management of the company has closed shop while company CEO Abdulakeem Morendayo is on the run, Peoples Gazette can report. 

Insha Allahu is one of the now ubiquitous investment companies springing up across Nigeria and currying investors funds. They show up claiming to be stockbrokers or offer financial or investment advice. 

They claim their investment offers are low-risk and will provide quick and high returns, with opportunities to invest in overseas companies or businesses.

The offers sound legitimate, with resources and testimonials to back up their claims.  

The investments offered in these types of schemes are usually shares, real estate high-return schemes, foreign exchange trading, or exportation of goods.

Peoples Gazette spoke with several individuals who had invested in Insha Allahu Asset Management & Investment Company Limited, an Abuja based firm, which presents itself as a business exporting coconut shell charcoal and other agricultural products. 

The business offered a 20 per cent return to its investors after bi-monthly. However, after some of these individuals paid in their hard-earned monies, and in one case, their inheritance, the company stopped paying monthly returns to the investors, claiming an issue with the Security and Exchanges Commission. 

Abdulkabir Shazili told the Gazette that he invested N500,000 in August 2020 and the company paid him the first return in October but since then, no returns have been paid. Mr Shazili said the company assured them that payments would be made in March. 

In March, the company announced that they could not continue with payment of the returns and instead, investors’ capital will be refunded. 
Another investor, Abdulkareem Abdulhakeem, invested N100,000 to test out the arrangement. After being paid for six months, Mr Abdulhakeem proceeded to persuade his friends and family to invest in this scheme. 

He notes that one of his friends invested over N7 million naira in the company, expecting a 20 per cent return every two months. But similar to Mr Shazili’s complaint; there have been no refunds of capital invested nor has payments of returns been made. 

Oyeleke Saidat, a staff at Insha Allahu, who also invested millions of naira alongside her family, tells the Gazette that there’s no word from the Company’s CEO, Abdulakeem .A. Morendayo. 

She notes that the company account has not been funded in months and despite the constant assurances from the company, information within the company reveals that there are no available funds to repay the investors. 
The likes of Mr Shazili and others stand to lose all the money they invested. 

After weeks of closely monitoring the company’s activities through company staff, Mr Morendayo is reported to be on the run, with his phone lines switched off.

Investors are distraught and have sought help from the Nigerian Police Force.

Investors have also turned to public forums such as nairaland to air their frustration, as efforts by the police prove discouraging. 

A cursory visit to the CAC website shows the company is actively registered, though the company’s physical office was closed when The Gazette visited. Attempts to reach the company’s lawyers proved abortive as they did not respond to phone calls and emails seeking clarification. 

Insha Allahu is one of the many investment schemes ripping Nigerians of their money with promises of high returns. 

Last year, a scheme called MBA Forex – which promised its investors 15 per cent ROI monthly, crashed in November, leaving over 100,000 investors stranded. 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) froze the bank accounts linked to MBA, saying that the company was owned by Maxwell Odum, who had collected over N171 billion from its investors before crashing.

CBN Godwin Emefiele (credit: Bloomberg)
CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele (credit: Bloomberg)

Also, another popular scheme, Barazar Multipurpose Cooperative headquartered in Yenagoa, Bayelsa had in March announced its inability to meet its obligations to its over 25,000 investors. The company owned by Miebi Bribena, a pastor, had promised to refund investors their capital running into billions but didn’t provide any reasonable timeline to refund their monies.

Despite the warnings by both the SEC and the EFCC to potential capital market investors cautioning against putting their funds in fraudulent investment schemes, Nigerians still fall prey to these schemes.

Phony companies continue to take advantage of the harsh economic situation in the country to scam unsuspecting public looking to make extra income. 

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