The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) Chairman, Mr. Ola Olukoyede, has said that seven out of 10 Nigerian students are involved in cybercrime.
He said this during a meeting with a delegation from Daar Communication PLC at the EFCC headquarters in Jabi, Abuja. The EFCC boss expressed deep concern over the increasing involvement of Nigerian students in cybercrime.
Describing cybercrime as a “menace and cankerworm” in society, Mr. Olukoyede stressed that the prevalence of this illicit activity among the youth is alarming. He called on the media to play a pivotal role in designing programmes aimed at enlightening young individuals about the consequences of engaging in cybercrime.
“Our job isn’t only about arrest, detention, and prosecution,” he stated.
He highlighted the need for a broader approach to addressing the root causes of cybercrimes and urged Daar Communications and other media outlets to contribute to the enlightenment of youths across the country, stating, “It is worrisome that seven out of 10 students today are involved in cybercrimes. These are the youths we are preparing to be leaders of tomorrow.”
In response to the EFCC chairman’s claim, the National Association of Nigerian Students (NANS), Akinteye Babatunde, swiftly condemned the assertion, labelling it “baseless” and “lacking empirical basis.”
“The EFCC chairman not only tarnishes the reputation of our hardworking and dedicated student community but also lacks any empirical basis,” he said.
In a statement released on Wednesday, Babatunde said there is a need for concrete evidence to support such a sweeping statement or an immediate retraction. “Our students have consistently demonstrated excellence in academics, leadership, and community service. To label the majority of them as criminals is not only an injustice but also an irresponsible generalisation,” he said, defending the majority of students against being unfairly stigmatised as criminals.