Foreign and Diaspora Affairs Principal Secretary Roseline Njogu narrated the plight of a family that was duped after selling property to secure a job abroad for their sons.
Speaking during an interview on Wednesday, May 17, Njogu stated that the family engaged with an agent who organised all the necessary documents including flight tickets for the man.
When it was time to travel, the agent asked the man to meet him at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) where he would board the flight to a country in the Middle East.
However, the agent stated that plans had changed and therefore the man would proceed to take his flight at Wilson Airport where they went together.
“This is an unfortunate story but there is a family that sold a lot of their wealth to send their young man for a job in the middle east.
“They were cheated by a rogue agent who met them at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. He then told them that the flight had changed and it was being taken at Wilson Airport,” Njogu narrated.
The PS stated that when the man boarded the plane at Wilson Airport, he landed at Eldoret instead of his intended destination in the Middle East.
“So the man boarded the flight and landed in Eldoret and of cause unfortunately it is not in the diaspora,” added Njogu.
Njogu was addressing the rising cases of unscrupulous agents who were taking advantage of unsuspecting Kenyans by promising to facilitate their travel abroad for different jobs.
"The National Employment Authority has a number of opportunities and by the time they put the opportunities there, those are legit.
"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also puts up opportunities that we know are credible but people are hunting for jobs and it is a desperate situation so some people are taking advantage of that," she stated.
How Kenyans are Conned
Njogu highlighted other cases of how Kenyans were duped by rogue agents. She stated that the agents issued tourist visas to their clients instead of work permit.
The move, she noted, was one of the red flags to watch out for because it meant that there was no job awaiting the person abroad.
"Another huge problem we have is human trafficking where you see an advert and apply and the Visas are processed in a strange way, you are given a tourist visa instead of a work permit. They even pay for your ticket and when you land you realise that there was no job," Njogu explained.
She added that Kenyans who fell prey ended up doing odd or illegal jobs to survive and in some cases, some were sold into slavery and could not come back home.
"You are put in a truck and driven across the border and what happens to a lot of Kenyans is that they end up in compounds with tall walls that are guarded.
"They are involved in cybercrime where they create several social media profiles to catfish rich people to send money. If you are not successful life gets very bad because you can be sold into slavery or you can lose a kidney,' she added.
Njogu's warning came even as the Canadian Immigration Department on Tuesday, May 16, issued caution over false immigration programmes targeting Kenyans.
The immigration department noted that any accurate information concerning special programmes would be shared through its website.
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