The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has withdrawn its scam alert issued against Nollywood actress, Nkechi Blessing’s ex-lover, and politician, Opeyemi David Falegan.
Falegan had claimed to be on a fundraising drive for the people of Ukraine with his charity organization, ODF Foundation, in collaboration with UNICEF on his Instagram page, @hon_falegan_official_.
The Nigerian arm of the organisation thereafter debunked the claim via its Instagram page @unicef_nigeria, on Friday, April 08, 2022, tagging it a “scam”.
Despite the alert, Falegan posted a video on his Instagram page to support his claim that he had indeed raised £61 to be donated to UNICEF’s relief efforts in Ukraine.
The video demonstrated how a link was generated from UNICEF’s Instagram page to create a fundraiser on his personal page.
The Instagram donation feature ensures that donations made with the link will be directly remitted to the organisation’s account.
However, Falegan also solicited funds and added bank account details for his foundation in the fundraising post.
On Monday, April 11, 2022, the Nigerian branch of UNICEF made a U-turn, by deleting the scam alert post.
The organisation via its Instagram page, @unicef_nigeria, also clarified that the alert was issued because Falegan tried to promote his charity organisation while raising funds in the name of UNICEF.
“We are aware that funds can be raised for UNICEF with the Instagram feature that allows users to raise funds for an organization of their choice,” the caption read. “However, no aspect of the fundraiser should include an unauthorized promotion, support, or fundraising for another organisation.
“We discourage intended or unintended affiliations with organizations we do not have a partnership with. In instances where this occurs, UNICEF can issue an alert through our office in the country where the unauthorized activity took place or where the organization operates.
“We have taken down the post with the scam alert as the fundraising activity in question has been discontinued.”
In response, Falegan has threatened a lawsuit against the UNICEF over the allegation.
The politician also described UNICEF’s scam alert as “gross irresponsibility” which he said would “be lawfully handled”.
“You cannot take down the scam alert post made about me without proper procedure or due process, you knew you made a blunder because I never made a fundraising with you,” he wrote on Instagram.
“I did with @unicef which was the main organ of @unicef for Ukraine’s war victims which was allowed and acknowledged.
“The hatchet write up by the UNICEF_Nigeria and its sponsors has not only portrayed I, Hon. Opeyemi David Falegan as a scammer in the public alone but it has depreciated my untainted image in Ekiti state, Nigeria and the world. This is pure gross of irresponsibility on your part and it shall be lawfully handled