I watched a documentary by “Jide Olanrewaju” about Nigeria. It was a collection of several stories from credible sources like the CNN and the BBC.
In this documentary, after Nigeria has gained independence, a group of smart Nigerians were sent abroad on scholarship.
During the first few years tuition fees and bills were paid judiciously, then it all went South in the blink of an eye, because the sitting head of state was overthrown.
A change of government is a devastating thing in Nigeria, they all come with their agenda which is mostly different from their predecessors, the new government may not favour you and your business, hence business tycoons involve themselves in politics, trying to elect their preferred candidate….this is a talk for later.
These abandoned students where in great debt in there various institutions mostly in the US and the UK.
The school managements were in constant communication with the then Nigerian government, reminding them of their mounting debt but the Nigerian government kept replying, “There is no money in the country”.
This students took to mischief, so they could survive. Their government practically abandoned them. That was the first time some Nigerians living abroad took to scamming, something the Nigerian culture and traditions never allowed… even as a kid Nigerians were very honest, mostly due to the fear of there gods that may hurt or kill them outrightly if they did evil, now we’re either Christians or Muslim and God doesn’t kill quickly and some men are no longer afraid to do evil.
To corroborate this story. I had a high school mate that was sent to Ghana from Nigeria to study in a university under the amnesty program sometime 2012. Then it was our brother (Dr. Goodluck Jonathan) that was the president.
He didn’t implement amnesty, it was his predecessor but he allowed the program to run according to the act binding it in the constitution.
This boy was in school, studying, hoping to graduate, return to his father land, find a job and continue with life.
When he got to 200 level, everything went south. The government changed once again to this present one.
Nigerian students under government scholarships were abandoned once again all over the world. These people and their fathers didn’t vote for him. A president who is tribalistic in his core and religious to the teeth didn’t have time for Christian amnesty students anywhere they might be, dead an alive.
They weren’t sent money, school fees weren’t paid. Some of them, He, they had to improvise once again, this time into online scams, perhaps romance scams to survive. So he said when we chatted last back in 2015.
But he said one thing I will never forget:
Na government put me for street…. That is a Nigerian pidgin, which can mean several things, but on this occasion he was saying “the government made him a scammer”.
Is he alive, dead? I don’t know, I haven’t heard from him since then. His phone doesn’t connect neither is he on social media, perhaps he uses a different name now.
To answer your question:
What was the first Nigerian scam?
The Nigerian government was the first Nigerian scam.
Documentary link: https://youtu.be/KgrVHrTvxC8
Story credit: Quora