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Tamale metro police commander says Sakawa issue is a delicate one



The Tamale metropolitan police commander, DSP Wisdom Lavoe has admitted that, fighting the activities of Internet fraud popularly called Sakawa in the metropolis has been a delicate one.

He said the police are trying to unravel the methodology and modus operandi of Sakawa boys in Tamale since its emergence some three years ago.

The criminal aspect of their activities, DSP Lavoe said, is very delicate because it is very difficult to trace those they are duping. “They sit in their various rooms and perpetrate such acts,” DSP Lavoe stated.

Responding to concerns from Civil Society Organizations (CSOs ) operating in the northern region over the withdrawal of huge sums of monies by Sakawa boys and the subsequent public flaunting of the ill-gotten wealth in Tamale, DSP Lavoe said, the issue has come to their notice.

At some point, DSP Lavoe asserted, the police lodged a complaint with the Bank of Ghana (BoG) over the huge money withdrawals at the various banks in the country but it appears the Sakawa boys are conniving with some bank officials.

Continuing, he said before internet fraud activities gained grounds in Tamale, it was scarce to see expensive vehicles such as Range Rover, Dodge and Toyota Tundras on the roads in the city, pointing out that previously, these Sakawa boys had driven in unregistered Toyota corollas.  Private banks, he added, are the sources for such huge withdrawals.

The Bank of Ghana (BoG) in June 2013 issued a directive to all commercial banks that there should be no 3rd-party withdrawal above 10,000 Ghana cedis over the counter. However, Sakawa boys are said to have been flouting the directive by withdrawing more than the stipulated amounts.

The BoG, DSP Lavoe explained, once issued a directive to banks on the Sakawa boys’ menace but the directive appears to have been disregarded. The police, he explained, are adopting different strategies to get to the bottom of the Sakawa activities.

DSP Wisdom Lavoe told residents at a forum that some of the Sakawa boys used their ill-gotten money to snatch some men’s wives and buy things at high prices and leaving stores without collecting the balance due.

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