Police in the City of Kigali have foiled a scam involving a ring that attempted to defraud a local businessman of millions of money in the name of helping him win tenders.
Police investigations indicate that one Jacques Singirankabo, on September 21, called his longtime friend and an entrepreneur in Nyagatare District identified as Emmanuel Nzaramyimana, to sell him an idea of two lucrative tenders – to supply clothes to Caritas Rwanda and food for mountain gorillas.
Both were ghost tenders that never existed.
This prompted Nzaramyimana to travel to Kigali later in the day to finalise the two deals, and met Singirankabo in a Kigali suburb of Nyamirambo.
“Singirankabo told Nzaramyimana that Caritas wanted 1600 trousers, 1800 sweaters and jackets, 1600 shirts and 1600 T-shirts – to be delivered within four days,” said Supt. Emmanuel Hitayezu, police spokesperson for the City of Kigali.
The clothes were apparently meant to be donated to about 800 selected vulnerable people in the country.
“The second deal was to supply food for mountain gorillas where he was required to pay Rwf3 million for the raw material that was supposedly to be taken to Europe for processing and that he was to get very high profit per kilogramme he supplied,” he added.
How it was foiled
On smelling a rat, Nzaramyimana tipped police in Nyamirambo, who went with him to Nyabugogo posing as part of the deal, where the deals were supposed to be finalized.
Singirankabo and one of his accomplices identified as Francois Bakina were arrested red-handed as they tried to get the money from the would-be victim.
Meanwhile, police is also looking for other identified two men connected to the ring, who are still at large.
“People should accept to be easy targets; tenders are not awarded or discussed on streets. The shortest routes could be the shortest way to fall and to lose what you have,” Supt. Hitayezu said.
The would-be victim was likely to lose about Rwf7 million, if the ghost deal had been brokered, according to investigations.
“If someone tells you a deal, you should go further to verify with the office or institution responsible to prevent falling prey of fraudsters. If you suspect anything unusual, inform police because that’s partly why it’s there to investigate and authenticate the truth of the matter instead of blindly venturing your hard-earned money in something you don’t know,” Hitayezu noted.