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DO THE MATH, PONZI SCHEMES ARE SCAM By Almubarak Onalaja

Written by Editor

Nigeria is in a dire situation economically, people are looking for ways to get free money, this is true for well above half of the youthful population, while some take to street to burg houses, some pick pocket, scam (419), Yahoo and the rest.

However, while some looks outright fraudulent, others look harmless and legitimate while in the real sense they are actually as fraudulent as others.

Let us go straight to the point, while checking status updates on my WhatsApp, I saw a post that really attracted me probably due to the situation of things in the country. It was an ad on a scheme called Juice box, it showed evidence of people withdrawing as much as #20,000 naira I was intrigued so I chatted the person up and got more information about the scheme, I was ready to pay my registration fee of 3000 naira, because I was using voice note my mom heard my conversion and immediately I finished she said do not do it. But I decided to investigate further.

I talked to two of my friends who are also involved in Atpays (another Ponzi scheme), one of them has also started filling his cup with Juice (juicebox), I went a bit further and I got to question one of the admins of Juicebox, while doing all this the questions on my mind were, how does 3k earn you 20k in less than 48hours without getting out of your comfort zone? What business do they do with the money? Should we call it profit or grant? What does Juicebox or Atpays whatever they call themselves have to gain from this?.

HOW IT WORKS
I will take Juicebox and Atpays as a case study in this article because that is what is in vogue. Though, I want to believe that they all work in the same way and for the same purpose which is to exploit people and I can assure you there is only one winner in this Ponzi game and that is the person behind the scene. I will take you through a brief explanation on how it works, so you can understand better.

JuiceBox
To register on this scheme you have to pay a registration fee of either #3000 or #9000 Naira depending on how much you want to withdraw #20,000 or #60,000 as the case may be. There are four stages which you must climb to be eligible for withdrawal, your registration put you on the first stage, then you have to refer two people who will also pay the same amount for registration for you to move to the next stage, then your referrals also have to refer two people each for them to move to your stage taking you to the next stage, I guess you know what you have to do to get to the last stage those four referrals have to register two people each for you to be eligible to withdraw. However, to fast track the process, through my investigation from an admin, if you can refer up to eight people in a day yourself you would withdraw that same day and get your money the next day which is actually more profitable to the man or woman behind the scene, if you can do the math.

Atpays
Like I said earlier, they all work in the same manner just some little spices. Atpays will disguise that you do not need referrals to earn, they are right to some extent because you can earn by carrying out some specific task but what they will not tell you is that you need referrals to withdraw which takes us back to the normal routine of exploitation. I will narrate the experience of one of my friends in school. He registered on Atpays with a sum of #1500 and he started earning. So excited he was when he earned about #7000 and some change, he then decided to withdraw. Unfortunately, he got a notification that he had  to refer three people for his withdrawal to be processed and so far he did not want to lose his money, he had no option than to refer people which he eventually did with each paying the same amount he invested. Having satisfied this requirement, his withdrawal was processed and he got an alert of 4000 Naira if not less. Who gained and who lost? Did he actually earned outside of his referrals?

DO THE MATH
Some shrewd people sat down and created a platform to exploit people without them realizing. Let us see who is actually accumulating the juice in the box and who actually get paid on Atpays.

JUICEBOX                 LEVELS
Registration fee #3000  Orange
Your referrals (2) #6000                    Whatever they call it
Your referrals referrals (4).  #12000    Wine
Their referrals (8)                       #24000      Juice
Total              #45000   Withdrawal Stage
Amount Withdraw-able #20,000

If you want to go through the fast lane, you have to refer eight people, registration fee = #24,000 and you are given #20,000, the man behind the scene gets 4000 Naira, note that he didn’t give you any money, you got the money from your referrals and in the process you paid him 4000 Naira for free, this would go on and on. Imagine a hundred people did this and they all refer people they have generated #400,000 for the man behind the scene for free while exploiting their referrals, but he is the ultimate exploiter because he deceived you all.

IT IS FRAUD
Now if this process goes on and everybody wins it would have been cool, but the fact is that it is impossible; it is not sustainable because it is not a business venture, it is fraud. In the long run, as we all know they all CAST, it is those last set of people in their hundreds or thousands that will bear the brunt of the Scam putting them in misery, if you are involved and you think you have gained, first, one way or the other you have contributed to these peoples misery and you are no less a fraudster than the man behind the scene, ignorance is not an excuse. Secondly you have actually not gain in the real sense, you have been exploited. I hope that has been made explicit enough.

There are several productive and legitimate ventures on the net that you can engage in that actually pays. A simple way to differentiate between a fraud and a legitimate business is that a business is a venture that has a possibility of profit or loss examples are, Forex, trading in crypto currency and the likes, any schemes that advertises a win-win situation is a fraud.

Succinctly, the purpose of this article is to open the eyes of people to the evil of these schemes.  To the unwary ones who are currently contemplating of joining, my candid advice is that they should rethink before they make final decision. To be forewarned is to be forearmed. In addition, those who are already gaining supposedly, you are being exploited and you are a conduit for exploiting others. Your decision to continue in this illegal business would totally rob you of the moral right to complain or criticize your country or the government unless you are a hypocrite. Posterity will surely judge.

DO NOT BE A FRAUDSTER.  DO NOT BE EXPLOITED

©️ Ex-iiS thought waves 2020

About the author

Editor

Bada Yusuf Amoo holds B.A in Literature in English from Obafemi Awolowo University, he is the publisher of thespeakingheart.com. He started the website in 2015, he has published both his works and other budding writers and poets on the website. He is a public commentators and his articles are on different websites.