Nigeria: Facebook faces N7m lawsuit over investment scam advert

Imaobong Uye, a Facebook User in Nigeria, has, asked a Lagos High Court, Nigeria, at to compel Facebook Nigeria Operations Limited and its parent company, Meta Platforms Inc to pay her N7million in damages after she claimed she lost her life savings to a scheme advertised on the social media app.

The claimant, Uye, in her May 12, 2022, statement of claim, alleged that Facebook hosted an advert about a purported investment scheme run by a firm, Jamalife Investment, sometime in 2020.

The claimant through her counsel, counsel, Bashir Rufai, stated that she was induced by the advert to invest in the scheme with all of her life savings.

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She said the scheme, unknown to her, was fraudulent and an investment scam, adding that she lost all her money to it.

According to her, she would neither have invested in it nor lost her money if Meta Platforms Inc had performed due diligence and vetted the advert before agreeing to host it.

She said the defendants had a duty of care to ensure that fraudulent adverts were not posted on their Facebook platform, but they breached that duty of care, which was how she got defrauded.

According to her, the fraudulent scheme would not have been successful if the defendants had complied with the Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria’s Code of Practice, which requires prior vetting of adverts before they are exposed to the general public.

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She is consequently asking the court for “A declaration that Meta Platforms Inc and Facebook Nigeria Operations Limited have a duty of care in the provision of social media and social networking services to the claimant but failed to fulfil the duty of care.

Mark Zuckerberg
Mark Zuckerberg

*An Order restraining the defendants from operating in Nigeria pending update of their Terms of Service, Advertising and Enforcement policies and all other necessary policies towards ensuring compliance with the duty of care owed to the Claimant.

“An order restraining the defendants from operating in Nigeria pending their compliance with the Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria’s Code of Practice.

“N5million in general damages and N2million as cost of legal representation.”

Meanwhile, no date has been fixed for the hearing in the suit.

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