No matter what part of the world GSK find themselves in there’s always trouble just around the corner. News coming out of Nigeria will add to GSK’s woes after it’s been alleged that employees have been running a promotional scam for its energy drink, Lucozade, and its soft drink, Ribena. (Link)
According to the charge, Dayanand Thandalam Siram, Jonathan Murray, Uchenna Uwechia, all of Glaxosmithkline Consumer Nigeria PLC, persuaded the citizens of Nigeria to buy their products using the slogan, “BIG CASH GIVE AWAY”. (Photo above)
The offence alleged to have been committed by Glaxosmithkline Consumer Nigeria Plc and its officials are contrary to and punishable under section(1)3 of the advance fee fraud and other related offences Act laws of the Federation of Nigeria.
Section(1)3 of the Advance Fee Fraud and other Fraud Related Offences Act is defined as…
A person who, being the occupier or is concerned in the management of any premises, causes or knowingly permits the premises to be used for any purpose which constitutes an offence under this Act commits an offence and is liable on conviction to imprisonment for a term of not less more than 15 years and not less than five years without the option of a fine.
Dayanand Thandalam Siram, Jonathan Murray, Uche Uwechia, Glaxosmithkline Consumer Nigeria PLC and others, now at large, are alleged to have established and keep the premises of 1, Industrial Avenue, Ilupeju, Lagos as a place for the purpose of a lottery to be used for the purposes of obtaining by false pretense from the Nigerian public.
GSK’s head office in Nigeria is located at 1, Industrial Avenue, Ilupeju, Lagos so it would appear that those who stand accused of the offences carried out those offences at GSK’s Head Office in Lagos.
It’s alleged that Rahul Culaco, Omolara Banjoko, Adebayo Elegbe, Shelewa Ashimi, and Friesland Campina Wamco Nigeria Plc also used GSK’s Head Office to carry out offences.
Rahul Colaco’s Facebook page (here) claims that he is currently living in Nigeria yet works at Dutch Lady, which is in Malaysia?
Omolara Banjoko’s LinkedIn page (here) states that she is currently Senior Brand Manager at Royal FrieslandCampina in Lagos, Nigeria. Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria PLC is a multinational manufacturing company: it is an affiliate of Royal Friesland Campina of The Netherlands, the world’s largest dairy cooperative.
Nothing is known about Adebayo Elegbe or Shelewa Ashimi.
It’s unknown exactly what sort of criminal offence was carried out here. Did Glaxo and their employees pay out cash to “winners” of the lottery who weren’t really winners? A check of the Lagos Judiciary website sees no case filed.
In May 2015 it was reported that a total of 14 million naira was given out to lucky consumers of the Lucozade Ribena drink promotion. Eight winners were rewarded with the sum of N1,000,000 (roughly $5000) each, 600 winners of N10,000 (roughly $50) were also electronically drawn through the eight-week campaign period. The eight lucky millionaires, selected randomly through electronic draws held at the company’s corporate office in Lagos, were Glory Idoda, Henry Oboro, Jude Nwosu and Osawe Valentina, Akan Essinwang, Ibe Ejike, Tomide and James Etukpo. It’s unknown if any of the eight millionaires are implicated in the fraud or, indeed, if the other alleged winners were actually real or, if indeed, they were paid. See video.
I asked GSK Consumer Relations if Dayanand Thandalam Siram, Jonathan Murray and Uchenna Uwechia had been put under suspension pending an inquiry. Despite my email being addressed to Andrew Witty and GSK Board Members, a Glaxo spokesperson told me, “You have reached GSK’s Consumer Relations Department in the UK and we are only able to handle enquiries and complaints for products marketed in Great Britain and Republic of Ireland.”
So, I wrote to GSK Nigeria, as yet they have not replied.
The story doesn’t end here, in fact it takes a rather bizarre twist.
To be continued…
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