Opinion: Humour in Hoax

by Omotunde Kasali

The scam becomes a silly sort of amusement, and the perpetrator is humbled from a villain to a clown, a comedian that acts unintelligently to make people laugh.

Someone sent me a scam email last week. I understood it was scam the instant I saw its subject, even before reading its body. I was not taken by it, I was not angry, I was not irritated by it. Oddly, it gave me humour. But I could find the humour in this scam email only because I had realized it was scam and was safe from falling its victim. I laughed in my mind, and smiled.

I realized that a scam is not a completely bad thing if the supposed victim – as I was in this case – knows that it is a scam.

Fela, in his witty rendition, called it Stalemate:

You know some people dem tink say dem be original hustler pass some other people. Yea, so two hustlers come meet you. Dem wan hustle you. And you sef you be original warrior sef. Hmm…and you sef you don see all the beginning and the end of the hustle. Dem wan fall you. Dem go say hmm… Stalemate

The scam becomes a silly sort of amusement, and the perpetrator is humbled from a villain to a clown, a comedian that acts unintelligently to make people laugh. Only the clown, in this case, is faceless behind a computer and is unaware of his clownish outlook, which makes it the more amusing.

So when I got this scam email, this hoax, I felt as though I was being amused by a clown. And I would like to pass this amusement to my readers. The scam email will appear below, in its exact form, and the reader should read lightly with the knowledge that it is scam.

Read thus:

Dear Owner`s,

The Department of  Treasury and Finance United States,(DTF) has been handed over the unclaimed money held to GMA for Microsoft and Facebook users worldwide. And your e-mail address has been selected as one of the beneficiary. The Funds that was released by the Department of Treasury and Finance worth billions of Dollars from various unclaimed sources and the details of this funds can be found in the ABC News and various local News papers in United States. And the main objectives of this program is to assist on disability.

The sources of the unclaimed funds are :-

  • Utility deposits (very common), credit balances, store refunds
  • Uncashed dividend, payroll or cashier’s checks
  • Stock certificates or accounts, bonds, mutual fund accounts
  • Life insurance policy proceeds
  • Undistributed wages
  • Checking and savings accounts
  • Gift certificates
  • Traveler’s Checks
  • Safe deposit boxes
  • Royalty payments
  • Court payments or deposits
  • Deceased Estates

Each beneficiary is entitled to the sum of $96,000.00. And the necessary documents must be submitted upon request for the claim. More so, you are to provide the following details for processing and proper documentation.

  1. Full name:
  2. Residential address:
  3. Telephone numbers:
  4. Sex:
  5. Occupation :

Once your details has been processed, the account department will overnight your claim check via FEDEX within 24Hrs or transfer via Online banking.In addition, any double claim known as double counting will be cancelled without any notification and such e-mail account will be locked/blocked.

Once again, congratulations.


Richard Parker.

GMA for Microsoft and Facebook

Claims Manager.


Well, I am sure you had a good laugh.


Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

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