The army and police have arrested a 38- year- old woman, Harriet Nasuuna, who has been an acting recruitment agent of a Senior Three student, William Mugenyi 18, for fake jobs in Kenya.
Nasuuna had so far recruited 179 youths from various parts of the country and keeping them at her home in Kakiri, Wakiso district.
Out of the 179 youths, at least 98 had each allegedly paid 100,000 Shillings as a recruitment for jobs in Kenya, meaning 9.8 million Shillings was collected from the victims.
The remaining 81 allegedly paid 50,000 Shillings each translating into four million Shillings. This implies that Nasuuna and Mugenyi collected 13.8 million Shillings from job seekers picked from Nansana, Kyengera, Bukomero, Butambala, Kasese, Fort Portal, and Kyegegwa.
“Mugenyi told me to recruit energetic young men and women for jobs in Kenya. I have been getting these people by telling one person to inform another about this employment opportunity. My boss is Mugenyi William, and is a resident of Kapeka Semuto in Nakaseke district,” Nasuuna said.
Patrick Onyango the Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson and UPDF First Division Spokesperson, Maj Charles Kabona, said the information already gathered shows Mugenyi is an S.3 student at Kapeka Secondary School.
“Mugenyi was allegedly acting as an agent on behalf of his sister, identified as Carol, associated with the Humble Company in Nairobi, Kenya. Both male and female victims had converged at Nasuuna Harriet’s residence in Nampunge village, Kakiri sub-county, Wakiso district, awaiting transportation to Nairobi, Kenya,” Onyango said.
Maj Kabona told the media that Nasuuna’s act is a security threat and human trafficking.
She has since been slapped with charges related to human trafficking. Security said it was tipped off by locals who became concerned about the youths gathered at Nasuuna’s home and speaking different languages an indication that they had been gathered from different areas.
“Further investigation revealed that the victims were being lured into positions such as waiters, waitresses, supermarket attendants, and casual laborers at St. Mary’s Coffee Company in Kenya. A total of 179 victims, comprising 99 males and 80 females, were rescued and taken to Kakiri police station for necessary arrangements to facilitate their return to their respective homes,” Onyango said.
The victims said Nasuuna would instruct them to alert their colleagues about the employment opportunity in Kenya. “This job promise was exciting and the fee needed for us to get the jobs was affordable. I personally informed over 10 of my friends about this opportunity because I wanted us to go and work. We have been jobless for a while,” one of the victims said.
Security has said the victims will be reunited with their relatives and also ensure they are engaged in government programs.
The job scarcity in Uganda has made many youth fall victims to employment scam masters. Some have lost millions and others sold their property for jobs in countries like Canada, and South Korea but have ended up crying foul.