Denis Odoki, the Lyantonde District Police Commander, says they have so far arrested 14 members of the group which was trading as Global Alliance In Motion, an organisation that was later found to be non-existent. Before their arrest, the group paid for radio announcements for job opportunities which they purportedly had at their factory and main office in Lyantonde.
The police in Lyantonde district have
busted a racket of scammers who duped more than 400 people with promises of non-existent jobs. They were arrested during ongoing operations that started on Friday, in pursuit of individuals who were obtaining money by false pretence from unsuspecting Ugandans.
Denis Odoki, the Lyantonde District Police Commander, says
they have so far arrested 14 members of the group which was trading as Global Alliance In Motion, an organisation that was later found to be non-existent. Before their arrest, the group paid for radio announcements for job opportunities which they purportedly had at their factory and main
office in Lyantonde.
Desperate Job seekers were tricked to pay a recruitment
fee of 900,000 Shillings to qualify for a daily wage of 150,000 Shillings for parking and labelling herbal products in the factory. Still, those from Kamwenge, Kasese, Mbarara, Ibanda,
Isingiro, Kabale, Kisoro, Kiruhura, Kanungu and other parts of the western
region, were asked to pay 120,000 Shillings for their accommodation in Lyantonde.
However, when they arrived in Lyantonde, none of the terms that they agreed upon was met. Male and
female recruits in groups of seven and nine were told to share rooms as they
wait for placement, a development which attracted concern from area leaders and residents in Kyabuuza, Kaliiro and Kooki villages, many of whom questioned the growing number of strangers roaming around the town.
Mustafa Kalule, the Lyantonde Town Council Chairman, Fred
Muhangi, the Lyantonde District Chairperson, and Pauline Kemirembe Kyaka, the
Lyantonde Woman MP, led operations that saw more than 100 arrested while others are still scattered and stranded.
//Cue in; “So webantiiseko netukwatagana…
Cue out…nti olwo olukusa lwapoliisi.”//
Some victims say they got loans to pay the recruitment fee while others sold property including livestock to get the jobs. Emmanuel Innemani, one of the affected people from
Kiruhura, says that his colleague told him about the job placement which came at a time when he was
//Cue in; “Waliwo omwana nail nsoma naye…
Cue out…bagenda okukolera nebinsobela.”//
Beatrice Nyangoma, another victim of the scam who came from Kyegegwa District says she travelled to Lyantonde
and paid the recruitment and accommodation fees only to be told that the only job available was prostitution.
//Cue in; “Nentuuka wano nebanzijako…
Cue out….senga wange nasindika sente.”//
However, police declined to reveal the identities of the
racket members in custody saying it may jeopardise ongoing investigations. But Muhammad Nsubuga, the Regional Police Commander has appealed to all the people who were duped in this job scam to report and record
statements at Lyantonde police station to aid ongoing investigations.
A similar incident occurred in August 2018 when over 300 youths
stormed the office of Lyantonde Resident District Commissioner demanding a
refund of over 750 million Shillings that they had paid to Six Star International Ltd for jobs
abroad. The district security committee then had approved the company to register
and recruit people for security guard opportunities in Afghanistan.
The exercise went on for three weeks at the RDC’s office but the recruiters
collected at least 3 million Shillings from each applicant and later disappeared leaving 30
women and over 270 men from Lyantonde, Kiruhura, Mbarara, Bushenyi, Kasese,
Isingiro and other districts in tears.