Real News About Fake Nigerians in Rome

In the following video you’ll see Italian reporters visit the Nigerian embassy undercover to find out how easy it is to obtain official ID documents for imaginary people. It turns out to be REALLY easy — fill out the form, hand over a photo, pay your €50, and PRESTO! You get a consular ID card. Which is the first step on the road to an official Italian residency permit.

Many thanks to FouseSquawk for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

Video transcript:

00:00   His name is Peter Wodere, and he doesn’t exist.
00:05   “How Easy It Is to Make a False Nigerian Document”
00:10   A large number of immigrants arrive in Italy.
00:13   The entire political system runs this —redo
00:17   Receive them or reject them. We also have another problem today.
00:22   The institutions truly know the identities of the people who live in our country.
00:26   We ask because we have received a signal.
00:30   The Nigerian Embassy in Italy would issue documents
00:33   without verifying the identity of the requestors.
00:36   And we decided to investigate.
00:39   We go to the website of the Nigerian embassy and this is what is written:
00:42   To obtain a certificate of nationality you need
00:45   A letter from a NGO, or from a local authority or any other document
00:51   that identifies the applicant as a Nigerian, along with two photographs. Cost: €50.
00:56   Timeline for delivery: 24 hours.
00:59   We go to verify this ourselves inside the embassy, and this is what they tell us.
01:03   I have a person who doesn’t have documents. He is a refugee, but
01:07   He has no Nigerian document, but he is Nigerian,
01:10   and needs to make documents all over again. He has to do the document of nationality.
01:15   He doesn’t have anything. —Fiscal code.
01:18   The fiscal code I can do online for him. —You do it online. And he has only
01:21   fiscal code and photo. —You do it online. Yes, yes, yes.
01:24   —We can do it? How much? —€50.
01:27   But to have a certificate of nationality, you don’t need any document, but only a fiscal code.
01:32   And with that you give me a ID card? —ID card, yes. So with that ID card, however,
01:35   one can go and apply for a (residence) permit? —Yes, yes.
01:38   —And if the (ID) data for the person are false? —Let’s go to work.
01:41   We manipulate the photograph with a common registry program.
01:45   We create two men and a woman. Let’s see…
01:50   an Italian fiscal code and [unintelligible]. In the first case, we follow the ordinary procedure
01:54   Wait in line at the window.
01:58   Payment of the €50 requested.
02:05   And the wait, so much waiting.
02:11   But at the end of the day, here is the first document.
02:18   I’m here. —Thank you. —His name is Peter Wodere, and he doesn’t exist.
02:24   In the second case, an embassy employee offers to facilitate the deal
02:28   Come, come, come. But quick, OK? I do this thing fast, and then I’m going. Give me €50.
02:33   Yes, but bring me a receipt. But you’ll have the receipt when it’s ready.
02:38   It’s either that or you sleep there.
02:42   And there is the second document. —Is it OK?
02:47   Yes. —His name is Allright Nnemombe, and he doesn’t exist.
02:52   In the third case, we used the so-called facilitator,
02:57   whom we meet outside the embassy. —You have to give me €10.
03:00   But we’ll do it today? —For €10, he has us fill out a form.
03:03   —Two spouses. Yes, yes, yes, spouses.
03:07   And then one of them accompanies us inside the embassy
03:11   Go with him. Go with him.
03:15   Give me €50. —€50? Yes.
03:18   —Come. [Unintelligible] outside, we ask him to collect the documents for us.
03:23   OK. C’mon. I’ll call you around two. Maybe you pick (them) up and we’ll meet here
03:27   OK. Good. — OK?
03:31   Which he does punctually. —Is everything in order? —Everything is OK.
03:35   Let me see. OK, the address is correct. Perfect. —So this is good
03:38   for the residence permit — everything.
03:41   Yes, this is good. —This is enough? With this they know where you come from.
03:46   Her name is Enola Usonlade, and she also doesn’t exist.
03:50   We have obtained three authentic consular (ID) cards,
03:53   which contain certification of identity and nationality of persons who do not exist.
03:57   These are all the effects of identity cards.
04:00   They are the first step in obtaining a Nigerian passport,
04:04   and they can be absolutely used for the first issuance of a residency permit.
04:08   So with that ID card, however, one can go and ask for the residency permit?
04:11   Yes, Yes. —And they’ll give it to him? —Yes. They’ll give it to him.
04:16   And then with the (residency) permit, he can do the Nigerian passport?
04:19   Yes. —But how is it possible that it is so easy to obtain documents with no identity?
04:25   Simple. Listen to what an embassy employee told us.
04:28   But how does one know if this is a Nigerian? —We know even by (his) tribe.
04:33   There are so many ways to know the Nigerians.
04:36   There isn’t an electronic system? —Umm, no. Not now.
04:40   Understand? In Nigeria, a digital registry doesn’t exist.
04:44   But how does one arrive here without documents?
04:48   Because they come here by sea, right?
04:51   According to the commission that is trying to computerize a Nigerian registry,
04:55   there must be 100 million people with false ID documents.
04:59   We’ll see you tomorrow, then— I’ll have him come. Or can I come like this…?
05:03   It would be better if you came. Who knows him.
05:07   And the lack of certainty of the identity of so many people
05:10   is a real problem, especially in times like these.
05:14   [Unintelligible] if the person we accept is not who he says he is and there is no way to verify it.

2 thoughts on “Real News About Fake Nigerians in Rome

  1. This poem came to mind, and you might find it controversial until you learn it was written from the point of view someone who has not been accepted as a national in the country they were born, nor the nationality they are descended from… think in terms of say you being born in the US to US parents and grandparents but left as stateless or “unknown” or foreigner in your country. Something like that makes you think… a lot. So really what is being pointed out is that countries, in the traditional sense, are busy closing themselves down, and that identity re. nationality is becoming no more than a bureacratic technicality… so welcome to the “otherside” , where there is a void even simple truths will do, if they even need a void.

    Where is your country, show me.
    The grain of sand that touches the sea.
    Or monument that is never free.
    What is your country, show me.
    A map pinned to a wall below which lawyers scrawl.
    Which is your country, show me.
    Amongst the choice of names that all look the same.
    How is your country, show me.
    Show me where it was born, where it shelters from a storm.
    Why is your country, show me.
    Where it is kinder than a true caress or stronger than the lips that bless.
    When is your country, show me.
    All it promised it was or will be displayed for even one person to see.

    Because you believe and protect your beliefs, from a denial that plays as the thief
    You have no answer for those who would know, but a sign that hangs empty with its last word ” CLOSED” .

    • Yeah.

      The whole experience was pretty well described by B Traven in “The Death Ship”. Merchant sailors being wh0 they are, it was fairly common for a seaman to get drunk, beaten up, thrown into jail for a night, and miss his ship, which contained his identity papers. It being the 1920s, there was no way for a seaman to recover his papers or even get to his country for a replacement. So, they became “men without a country”, not wanted in any place, and not hired by reputable ships. So, they generally had to work on “death ships”, which deliberately sought out sailors without a home country.

      Generally, a death ship had very dangerous working conditions. But, if a worker got drowned, scalded, or crushed, no one would really care. But the even more insidious death ship might actually be comfortable to work in. The problem was in the design: the ship was designed in such a way, through incompetent engineering, that it always operated at a loss. The only way for the owner to recover the cost of the ship was to collect insurance on it. Therefore, everyone on a death ship knew that at some point, it would be scuttled with all hands. But, because they had no papers and no place of refuge, they were stuck on the ship.

      So, what the Nigerians, or Syrians, or Aghans, or whatever do, is to get rid of all their real identity papers and use scams like the Nigerian embassy to get whatever papers are convenient at the time. By the way, does anyone believe that only 50 Euros are changing hands for the production of usable, false identity papers? I would say that there is a paymaster behind the scenes supplying the real money, with the objective of inundating Europe (Soros?).

      Anyway, as heart-rending as the plight of the stateless refugee is (even those who make themselves stateless by throwing away their real papers), the countries have got to protect themselves. I like the Israeli solution: any paperless African who came to Israel illegally is Somali, and Israel gives the Somali government a hefty fee for each “citizen” it repatriates. What happens to the “citizens” after “repatriation” is not the concern of the Israeli government.

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