A viral message on WhatsApp claimed that Nigerian billionaire, Femi Otedola is giving out 20,000 grants to all individuals for his 60th birthday celebration.
The post says all individuals are eligible to receive the grants and the offer is available to Nigerians through the link https://lyupz.com/OTEDOLA-BIRTHDAY-GIVEAWAY.
Who Is Femi Otedola?
Femi Otedola is a Nigerian businessman, philanthropist, and former chairman of Forte Oil PLC, an importer of fuel products. Otedola is the founder of Zenon Petroleum and Gas Ltd, and the owner of many other businesses across shipping, real estate, and finance.
The billionaire, one of the richest men in Nigeria, turns 60 on 4th November 2022 which he celebrated in grand style by renting a private luxury motor yatch ‘Christina O’ to celebrate with his family and friends.
ROUNDCHECK found out that a click on the link directs applicants to a graphic design of Femi Otedola’s birthday giveaway showing his picture.
We noticed that an applicant can have access to the next page, by clicking on the check and providing their phone number network provider, and clicking on request.
The last page of the website conveys a congratulatory note and that applicants are qualified to receive #20,000. This turns out to be false from our findings.
Applicants are asked to follow instructions that require them to share the link with 15 friends or 5 WhatsApp groups. This pattern is common with all malicious links designed to scam unsuspecting users.
It is until the green bar is filled after sharing the link multiple times that applicants will receive an SMS. We have debunked several other hoaxes using this pattern to scam members of the public.
Using Verification Tool To Assess Site
With the aid of Scamadviser, a website search revealed that mainly negative reviews were found on the site.
Also using Whois (another website search engine) to track the link, it was revealed that the site was unavailable.
We did a thorough search on Otedola’s official social media pages as well as his web pages but there was no information about the claim.
Previous multiple findings have shown that the link with ‘lyupz’ is fake and malicious, designed to steal information from unsuspecting members of the public.
Findings have shown that the claim and link are misleading as Femi Otedola did not announce any N20,000 grant to celebrate his birthday through the malicious link.
The circulating Whatsapp message with the claim that Femi Otedola is giving a grant of 20,000 for his 60th birthday is INCORRECT. It is a hoax.
The claim and link are generated to steal details of unsuspecting members of the public.
This fact-check report was done under the ROUNDCHECK Volunteers Network cohort 2.