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Opinions of Monday, 1 July 2013

Columnist: Abdulai, Alhasan

Beware of tricksters in old schnapps bottles

Beware of tricksters in old schnapps bottles and old currencies (1)

ALHAJI ALHASAN ABDULAI

The security system seems to be on the heels of confidence tricksters who use subtle means to dupe ‘willing gullible people’. If these strategies that seem to be succeeding are to persist then the days of the ‘crooks’ are numbered. Media reports reveal that some victims of the ‘sumptuous tricks’ have began spilling the beans on the modus operandi of the crooks. The exposures are enough ‘eye openers’ for the victims and perhaps all those who would be tempted by the ‘tricksters’ in future.

Our message to all and sundry is simple; be on your guard, don’t be so ‘gullible and expectant’ as to fall prey to the old and over flogged tricks. You may suffer ridicule and not sympathy from your friends and loved ones if you fail to heed to this advice.

The latest of the tricks exposed by the police as published in the Saturday June 29 of The Mirror newspaper in Ghana is that three ‘notorious’ Kasoa based old schnapps bottle contractors have been arrested and put before court for allegedly duping a contractor of GHC 50,000 (500million old cedis) through subtle means.

The accused men Lovelace Aikins, 42, a Welder, Kweku Essuman, 34, a wood dealer and Mawuli Atsu, 37 a mason, allegedly duped the Mankessim based contractor james eghan, under the pretext of providing him with an empty old Scnnapps bottle.

ARREST OF THE CROOKS

The contractor called in the police to arrest the “crooks” when he realized that they were not able to provide him with the bottle promised earlier. The Mankessim based contractor is not the only person who has been duped by Confidence tricksters. Countless Ghanaians have been duped by men who cleverly craft stories on the value on old bottles and sometimes old currencies used by Ghanaians in the Gold Coast.

OLD CURRENCIES

Just like trade in old bottles the trade in old currencies is ongoing. The perpetrators are currently going round towns and villages whipping interest in this trade

Those contacted by the old currencies traders say they (the currency dealers) are offering between GHC1, 000 to GHC10, 000 for a currency depending on its value. The trade in the old bottles and currencies are without credible precedents. They seem very lucrative and said to be driven by those from Europe who wish to collect old historical items for their archives or for sale

MYSTERIOUS BUSINESS

The questions that must agitate the minds of all are: Why did a contractor who to some extent is knowledgeable fall for such tricks? I accept the answer that anybody can fall victim to tricks. What is the real value of the old empty bottle that is being offered for sale to the contractor for GHC50, 000?

Was he convinced about the market value of and who are ready to buy the old empty bottle?

If sold to a Ghanaian Contractor or Businessman how can he sell it the empty bottle to redeem his hard earned investment in it?

There seem to be no easy answers to the above questions because the whole transaction is shrouded in mystery. For the time being, let’s say that ‘only those who feel it know it’. In a transaction that is so difficult to understand the least expected of you all is to stay away from it.

The above issues shrouded in mystery must rouse the minds of all those who are encountered by those Offering these bottles for sale or want to buy old currencies.

No one can stop you from getting involved in business but before you get involved in this business, you may have to investigate the stories behind it to find out how genuine the transactions are before making commitments.

As said above, before you get involved in the old ‘mysterious lucrative trade’ you should employ the wisdom in the wise saying that says “look before you leap”

ALHAJI ALHASAN ABDULAI

eanfoworld for sustainable development 0244 370345/ 0264370345/0208844791 abdulai.alhasan@gmail.com/eanfoworld@yahoo.com