SA family paid R100,000 for fake jobs in Canada scam: CT immigration firm

10 June 2019 - 09:38 By timeslive
Beware online scams trying to fleece would-be emigrants. File photo.
Beware online scams trying to fleece would-be emigrants. File photo.
Image: Leon Swart/

South Africans are warned to be aware of an online hoax that claims Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau is “begging” African leaders from Nigeria, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Ghana, Zambia and now South Africa for one million new immigrants from each of these countries.

Beaver Immigration Consulting said on Monday: "The hoax is part of an elaborate scam that is defrauding thousands of dollars from victims. Through social media and chat groups the scam has now moved its way down the continent and entered the South African market."

Fake news stories appeared online two months ago and are being shared on Facebook, Reddit, Twitter and Whatsapp groups that Canada has created “a new employment and migration programme” designed for immigrants from several African countries, the organisation said in a statement.

The posts have been declared as fraudulent and refuted by several Canadian High Commissions and Canada’s immigration ministry.

Nicholas Avramis, a licensed Canadian immigration consultant based in Cape Town, said that while Canada is on a mass immigration drive to attract skilled workers from around the world, the scammers twist elements of Canada’s immigration policy in order to manipulate victims into believing what the companies are doing is legitimate.

Beaver Immigration said the BBC’s Reality Check team reported that the “one million” figure referenced in the hoax posts has been drawn from the announcement by the government of Canada that is will add one million new permanent residents by the end of 2021.

However, Canada’s plan to admit more immigrants is not country-specific and selects applicants based on their age, work experience, education and English language proficiency.

“We have known about this scam for some time and we have been warning markets in East and West Africa to be vigilant, but the calls from South African victims and other foreign nationals living in South Africa have started to come in. It was only a matter of time before the scam reached South Africa,” said Avramis.

According to Avramis, this type of fraud has been common in India and Asia for years, but the scam has recently found its way into South Africa.

“I have both vulnerable members of society, such as asylum seekers, and wealthy families calling me to tell me about their experience. One family used all of its savings and paid R100,000 for two fake job offers from Canada.”