How 419 training schools recruit primary schools’ pupils, by EFCC boss

Friday Ajagunna
Friday Ajagunna
Ola Olukoyede

The chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Ola Olukoyede, has highlighted the existence of criminal centres in the country, which he called “419 training schools,” where primary school students are recruited and prepared for illicit activities.

He made the statement while addressing newsmen on the steps the commission was taking to stamp out corruption in the country.

The anti-graft boss said that in the course of tackling fraud nationwide, the agency has identified schools where young children are recruited and trained to become cybercriminals

According to him, this practice is also done with the consent of the minors’ parents, who are made to sign an undertaking.

He said: “We have what we call the 419 training schools, where they harvest our children from primary school. When they leave their regular studies, they close at 2 o’clock; they end up in some of these 419 training schools. They start indoctrinating them, these are facts.

“They first of all ask them, even their parents, to sign an undertaking. They get indoctrinated into cybercrime as young as they are. When they get into secondary school, ‘oh!’

Olukoyede further stated that this practice has been in existence for over a decade but unknown to the authorities or they have chosen to ignore it.

“That’s why you see them in 100, 200-level hacking. And you think they just started that way? No! We closed our eyes to some of these things. They started 10 to 15 years ago. We didn’t take cognizance of it. We thought all was well with Nigeria,” he added.

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