Last weekend, news broke on social media about a couple who had allegedly conned investors, defrauding them of an estimated N22 billion.
Mr Bamise Samson Ajetunmobi and his wife Elizabeth Ajetunmobi both founders of Imagine Global Solution Limited, an investment company based in Lagos Nigeria are said to be on the run with a bounty set for anyone who can locate them.
Several investors of the company took to social media alleging that the company defrauded them of investment which they placed in the hands of Imagine Global Solutions Ltd in exchange for high returns. A WhatsApp group and a Nairaland forum have also been set up for victims of the scam to work together in recouping their losses.
The backstory on the Ajetunmobi couple
Bamise Ajetumobi is the Managing Director of Imagine Global Solution Limited. He is a graduate of Madonna University Okija where he studied Banking and Finance. Previously, he worked at Zenith Bank for 8 years as a relationship manager before he resigned in 2016 to start Imagine Lenders.
Bamise’s initial clients were his former coworkers, and he was able to persuade his bank colleagues to trust him with their cash in exchange for a 10% monthly ROI payout when he started his company in 2016, according to Chukwudi Iwuchukwu on Facebook.
Commercial bank branch managers rushed to Bamise with their life savings. Many of them persuaded clients whose accounts they were managing, to invest with Bamise.
With such a solid headstart, Bamise had little need for media advertisements as the free referrals he got was sufficient, Chukwudi narrated, hinting that this may be why the company was able to operate under the radar of social media scrutiny. Chukwudi also claims that a number of Bamise’s previous colleagues from the bank joined Imagine Lenders, having been enticed with fatter paychecks than what the bank offered.
The company, which was founded in 2017, intended to become a major money lender by offering microloans to the unbanked, small and medium-sized companies, and low-income workers throughout Africa and the rest of the globe.
The company offered loan disbursements ranging from N10,000 to N100,000 on a 30-to-40-day cycle and needed a minimum investment of N100 million from investors, with an interest rate ranging from 6% to 36% depending on the capital amount paid monthly or as negotiated.
The company’s website (imaginelenders.com) has now been disabled online, as have most of the social media handles of both Bamise and his wife.
The company has long obtained citizenship by registration from Antigua and Barbuda. Pictures of their passports surfaced on social media and was first posted by Mr Jackson Ude, a social media influencer.
Elizabeth is an alumnus of the University of Nottingham, United Kingdom, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Park Royal, and Lagos Finishing School. She runs a staffing and placement agency alongside a training school for semi-skilled and domestic staff called Aymie Staffing Solutions.
What people are saying on Twitter
@kingkryssie said: “Different people will just wake and start up a company just to rip people of their hard-earned monies. Just look at this Bamise guy now, scammed people of N22bn. And they’re supposedly regulated by SEC.”
@ezulyk said: “That is why investments in Nigeria seem not to be working out. Some open an investment company, then find a way to dupe and run or embezzle and hide. End of year like this, investment companies are folding and running away cos the condition in the country does not favour them.”
@wrytnonso said: “When they called their business “Imagine” and Nigerians still invested.
@Dabobelemabon said, “Ponzi schemes will always win in Nigeria because of the wicked government, 30k minimum wage with daily inflation of commodities. People will become greedy and take more risk, but harm their self. NBA forex in PH succeed despite having physical offices other will too.”
@”BolanleOdu, “It is your greed and stupidity that let you give your money to unproven and fake fund managers that promise you 20% returns per month. You’re a thief and I have no pity for you. Because there’s no (see Gloria and Muyiwa) consequence there will be more like this Bamise case.”
Jackson Ude said, “So after stealing N22billion belonging to Nigerians, the Ajetumobis bought themselves an Antigua and Barbuda citizenship and fled. @antiguagov must cancel their citizenship and send them back to Nigeria.”
As much as many investors have indicated they will track the Ajetunmobis down and bring them to justice, neither the regulatory agencies nor the security agencies have put out official statements on the incident.