Tuesday, September 21, 2010

No Gold Going for a Song

Those 'well-watered' Westerners who strike cyber friendships and business partnerships with West Africans, let me etch this on your minds: there are no gold nuggets glittering, and there is no fairy gold dust winnowing, on the streets; there is no gold bullion in the dingy rooms of faux royal families. Ergo, before your greed eggs you on to wire reckless dollars to criminal cliques in order to earn sky-high returns, won’t you at least take the time to learn about the social and business culture, names and norms?


  1. Hear Hear!!! Couldna said better meself :)

  2. In a previous work incarnation I used to deal with people who fell for scams. It never ceased to amaze me how desperate people were to believe these things were real.
    Me: "look at it this way, either it's a scam and you'll lose all your money, or it's legit in which case it's money laundering and you're going to jail"
    Them: "ok, so can you just give me some more information..."

  3. Kwame Mensa-Bonsu22 September, 2010

    It is all greed greed greed!

  4. I think greed comes into it. But it is sometimes more complex and also involves many cultural misunderstandings, white guilt and so on.

    An interesting BBC clip, How They Caught the Ghana dating scammers, can be seen at:


    It shows how one very ill and desperately lonely woman, lost everything.

    Personally, I think that lying takes different forms and I think many 'Westerners' are not prepared for the type of lies they come across from Africa.

    People I have come across that have been scammed just wanted to help someone. They didn't understand the extent people will go to to lie, fake receipts and so on. With the difficulty of getting information in Ghana they did not know how to check out if things were real.

    How do we get to know cultural norms? Probably by engaging with people from those cultures and there's the problem!

  5. me just thinks they are greedy or INCREDIBLY naive



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