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Dhu al-Qadah 1441AH

FRAUD: the abhorrent norm



BismiLlaahir Rahmaanir Raheem.

Today, many from the youths have become so obsessed with acquisition of wealth such that it’s viewed as a matter which one can only equate with life and death. And for this reason, many take illegal means to come by riches, the most prominent of which is “Yahoo” (internet fraud) as well as other fraudulent engagements analogous to same.

The wildfire of yahoo is far-reaching to such an extent that high school kids- teens are now internet fraudsters. This is in great contrast with the narrative about 15years ago, when Yahoo was more of a myth, in fact, it was more or less of a Nollywood theatrical concept as Yahoo was not only seen in movies, internet fraudsters were at the barest minimum.

Today, either as a friend or mere acquaintance, virtually everyone knows at least an internet fraudster- further
buttressing the widespread of fraud. More appalling is the acquiescence of the society, letting this
morally condemnable act go uncondemned. Only a fraction of the society now sees fraudulent activities as abominable wrongs. Others are either into it or sitting on the fence, bringing different justifications on platter, the most jejune of which is: “it’s a recompense of what the white-men did to our forefathers”. Each time I hear this, it disgusts me more than the previous time. Ironically enough, these are people, some of who assume the role of intellectuals in some other matters.

In our society today, people are more interested in having a share of your money than knowing the source. Individuals with unexplained wealths are now role models, given undue recognition. Likewise, the known fraudsters are glorified.

Everyday, the tension to become aff luent surges through an average Nigerian youth, especially those who have access to the internet. Poverty has become criminalized and dignity of labour becomes only words on different pages of the dictionary.

Youths are now desperate to make money, most especially those whom are easily enticed with luxury. They get oppressed and, in some cases, depressed as everything seems like a competition to them. The ones who succumb to the oppression now not only take illegal, but also drastic means to acquire wealth, even if it means a cake off their poop. In fact, a young man once was caught on camera eating feces and bread. Whether it was his or someone else’s doesn’t even matter as that only reeks of their desperation to become rich and join the league of those who flaunt their filth-engendered luxury and oppress the weak minded and less conscious young individuals, Muslims most especially.

Seeking wealth to this extent is a clear transgression of the limits set by Allah as Allah
says in Surah An-Nisa, Verse 21:
يَ أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَ تَْكُلُوا أَمْوَالَكُم بَيْنَكُم
بِلْبَاطِلِ إِلَّ أَن تَكُونَ تَِارَةً عَن تَرَاضٍ مِّنكُمْ وَلَ
تَقْتلُُوا أَنفُسَكُمْ إِنَّ اللََّ كَانَ بِكُمْ رَحِيمًا
O you who believe! Eat not up your property among yourselves unjustly except it be a trade amongst you, by mutual consent. And do not kill yourselves (nor kill one another). Surely, Allah is Most Merciful to you.

This also comes in a Hadith of the Prophet صلى
الله عليه وسلم : The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Jibreel has inspired to me that no soul will die until it has completed its appointed term and received its provisions in full, so fear Allaah and do not be desperate in seeking provisions, and no one of you should be tempted to seek provision by means of committing sin if it is slow in coming to him, for that which is with Allaah can only be attained by obeying Him.”
[Narrated by Abu Na’eem in al-Hilyah; classed assaheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’, no. 2085.]

What’s apparent is that people tend to underestimate the consequences of wronging others. Some think they can deliberately wrong people and seek Allah’s forgiveness afterwards having satisfied their whims. Perhaps, they do not know that such sin will not be completely forgiven until the wronged pardons them because it’s a requirement in repentance that one gives back the right of the person that has been wronged in a case where the right of man is involved. It’s rather illogical that someone robs people of their hard-earned opulence and only seeks Allah’s
forgiveness, what then should be the compensation of the robbed? Allah is not in the least unjust to His servants: “O My servants, I have forbidden oppression for Myself and have made it forbidden amongst you, so do not oppress one another” [The forty Hadith. An Nawawi 24]

Unfortunately, enough, every incident of fraud has only tarnished the reputation of our country- Nigeria. Now, no country wants to take chances with Nigerians, Nigerians are subjected to stricter scrutiny just because of the fraudulent tendencies an average Nigerian youth is known to have. This is a big jeopardy on legitimate remote workers and those who seek remote job opportunities and likewise, scholarship opportunities. This can be seen in the lamentations that followed the arrest of Hushpuppi for fraud of millions of dollars, who had hitherto been a glorified internet celebrity, albeit with unexplained wealth.

It’s sincerely hoped that those who glorify fraud will realize the inherent evils in so doing sooner because the adverse effect of this moral menace and heinous crime is far-reaching. This in consonance with the words Allah
Surah Al-Anfal, Verse 25:
وَاتَّقُوا فِتْنَةً لَّ تُصِيبََّ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا مِنكُمْ خَاصَّةً وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللََّ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ
And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial, etc.) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong (but it may afflict all the good and the bad people) and know that Allah is Severe in punishment.

It behooves everyone who believes in Allah and the last day to fear Allah in seeking wealth by taking legitimate means, relying on Him and having patience if it’s taking time for indeed, the fear of Allah is the foundation of rizq:
وَمَن يَتَّقِ اللََّ يَْعَل لَّهُ
And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty).

وَيَرْزُقْهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَ يَْتَسِبُ وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَِّ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُ
إِنَّ اللََّ بَلِغُ أَمْرِهِ قَدْ جَعَلَ اللَُّ لِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدْرًا

And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine. And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him. Verily, Allah will accomplish his purpose. Indeed, Allah has set a measure for all
things. [At Talaaq Verse 2 & 3]

If we do not put an end to glorifying fraud, fraud may put an end to us.

Managing Editor at | Website

An ultimate student of law, University of Ilorin.

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