Lagos: Brother marries sister in desperate bid to secure UK visa
By Chioma Igbokwe
Saturday, February 20, 2010
It could be described as a taboo for siblings to marry one another, but Anthonia and Victor in desperate bid to secure UK visa decided to be known and addressed as husband and wife. On the fateful day, January 28, 2008, Anthonia dressed in a flowing white gown, marched to the Ojo marriage registry with Victor to be joined as husband and wife. This was done in a bid to convince the British High Commission to grant them a visiting visa since they can never meet the criteria needed to secure such visa.
Anthonia and Victor
With the aid of a naval officer, (Kayode Olaniyan) they were able to secure forged documents, which portrayed them as highly placed individuals in Nigeria. The expectation was that the forged document would guarantee them a visiting visa, and they applied to spend two weeks in UK.
To further convince the BHC, they went along with their wedding photograph, especially where they were cementing their ‘marriage’ with a kiss. Bubble however bust on February 16 when the British High Commission that was not aware the ‘couple’ is related by blood discovered that the bank statement presented was slightly altered. They alerted the police at the Special Fraud Unit, Ikoyi who in turn dispatched an officer to stand by for any possible arrest.
Unknown to them that their game was up, the BHC invited the ‘couple’ for a final interview, where they would be issued a visa. They were careful to ensure that they appeared in uniformed attire so that the difference would not be spotted. Passersby commended their choice of spouse as they looked alike. In the visa section, holding each other closely they stepped into the interview room. The man meant to interview them enquired if they had a swell time on Sunday being Valentine. They were still waiting for their Visa to be issued when the police arrested them for forgery. They were arrested alongside the visa racketeer, Kayode Olaniyan who is alleged to have forged the entire document used for the act.
The PRO SFU, CSP Akan, explained that when Victor discovered that the game was up, he shouted that the man (Kayode) who gave them the document was waiting outside to collect the balance as soon as they collect their approved visa. Unknown to Kayode, the game was up; he was arrested where he was waiting for the balance as soon as the deal clicks. In the course of interrogation, ready to vomit all the illegal things, they have done, Victor confessed that Anthonia was not his wife but his blood sister.
Victor told Saturday Sun that he was tired of struggling to survive in Nigeria that was why he quickly grabbed the opportunity when Kayode promised to assist them to travel out. “He gave us instances of people who he had travelled as ‘couple’. He requested that we should pay N900,000 for the deal but we ended up paying N180,000 with the promise to pay up as soon as the visa is granted.
“He promised that it was easier for couple to be granted visa so we quickly bought the idea to pose as couple. Part of the criteria was to get married, he arranged and we paid at the Ojo marriage registry. He also got some document which shows that I am a marine engineer, working in a company where I am paid more N300,000 monthly. I am an OND student of Lagos State Polytechnic where I am studying Banking and Finance.
I am not a marine engineer and do not have an account in WEMA Bank. I have never attended Federal College of Fisheries and Marine Technology, Victoria Island. My real names are Ayeye Victor Adejobi. My younger sister who posed as my wife is Antonia Ayeye. Nebelisa is not my father’s name at all. Kayode gave us the surname ‘Nebelisa’ and instructed that we should obtain the passport. He took us to Ado Ekiti where we obtained the passport in the name of ‘Nebelisa’.”
When asked how he felt, kissing his sister, Victor said: “ It was disgusting but then I had no choice. I felt very bad knowing that it is an abomination, but because we wanted results, we had to comply. Take a look at the picture it will show that I was not comfortable with what I was doing.” Anthonia saw herself as an actress that was why she was very comfortable when it was time to kiss the bride.
On why she decided to embark on such mission, Anthonia explained that she did it to better her life and would not hesitate do whatever it took to get to the promised land. “I am a stylist and my office is located at Onobotubon Street, off Asho Street, Benin. Victor is my blood brother from the same father and mother. We were introduced to Kayode by a family friend who claimed that he has assisted a lot of people to secure UK visa.”
She explained that: “one of the ways to perfect the plan was to marry my brother, Victor. I saw that as a mere act, since I know that I am not married to my brother in real life. As agreed he took us to the marriage registry at Ojo, Lagos, to get married. At the end we were issued a marriage certificate. To perfect the business, he said we are to pay N900,000, but we managed to drop N180,000 as part payment. I am single and still searching ”
Their rip-off games man, Olaniyan, was not satisfied with his pay in the Navy and he chose to go into visa racketeering to add to his monthly salary. With his experience in the Navy, he was able to reproduce documents used to facilitate his clients’ visa requests, which depict the applicants as having military background.
Kayode who lives at No. 42 Olajumoke Street, Ikotun, Lagos, claimed that he joined the Nigerian Navy in 2005, and still works in the Navy. He explained that he knew his clients “through a family friend of mine, Tunde who told me that they were desperate to travel out of the country. I was the one who arranged for the forged marine documents and marine certificate of competency.
I brought the sample and it was reproduced just like the original document. I then hired the services of a good forger, Isaac, who brought the bank statement, sales receipt and the other documents that were presented. I asked them to pay, N900,000 to process the document which they agreed to but I only collected N180,000 based on the agreement that I would receive the balance at the end of the business. I would have collected the remaining sum today if the visa was issued.”
To the amazement of the British High Commission, Victor presented a document showing that he is working at the Durba Shipping (DNL). He also furnished the Commission with an internal memo approving 30 days annual leave, payment slip indicating a monthly salary of N310,000, letter of employment showing that he was employed as 2nd Engineer with effect from May 12, 2003 and a letter of introduction from the company. Victor further gave the Commission a certificate of Federal College of Fisheries and Marine Technology, Victoria Island Lagos.
Anthonia, the hair stylist on her part appeared before the interview panel claiming that she is CEO/Chairman of the Emmanuel Sidah Ventures. She presented an introduction letter of herself as the owner of the company. Also in her custody was a document from the Corporate Affairs Commission showing when the business was registered. This document was a certificate to authenticate the registration of the business.