An Ethiopian American lady has reportedly gone underground after duping some investors including a Liberian of over US$500,000.00 under the pretext that she had the willpower to afford them the opportunity of investing into Ethiopian construction industry, and invest in the Quarry mining sector.
One of the victims of this Ethiopian American ploy who spoke to our staff in a telephone interview said, in late March, 2012; he traveled to the United States of America to attend the LIBERIA & US Business Summit in Atlanta, Georgia where he met Ms. Martha Wondimu Alemayhu an Ethiopian American citizen.
He said a friendship developed between them, and she Martha in her pretended lovely words to the victim expressed her interest to visit back home and explore investment opportunities.
The victim said, upon his return to Liberia, communication continued between both of them, and at a point in time, Martha convinced him to visit Ethiopia with her.
While in Ethiopia, the victim continued, “We identify investment opportunity in the construction industry to invest in the Quarry mining sector. Initially, we decided to start from the beginning by acquiring the land with rock deposit along with an Ethiopian by the name of Ghion”.
Explaining further, the victim said before returning to Liberia, both of them set up a company named GEMAR, Plc. Considering the Ethiopian legal system, “We were advice to do a Power of Attorney, which we did in order to allow her process the company document in my absence. Upon my return to Liberia, Martha called and informed me that Ghion had withdrawn due to family problem”.
“She called while I was in Liberia that we had a good deal. A quarry was up for sale including all the equipment for the amount of 16 million Birr (US$888,888.89). The owner was asking for a down payment of 6 million Birr upon which he was going to give us full access to the quarry for operation. She encouraged me to go ahead with the deal considering the infrastructural boom in Addis Ababa. In reality, the prospect is good. Some associates of mine and I here in Liberia raised the amount of US$568,000.00 to pay the initial amount requested”.
He said upon his return to Ethiopia in September, 2012 for signing of document, the owner said that he only agreed to give us access to the site for operation but not full access to title till the full amount was paid.
“This was not the initial understanding. I did asked Martha as to how we were going to raise the balance payment ? She kept assuring me that once we take over, we were going to sell, raise the balance to be paid”.
He narrated that after couple of months, she started asking me to raise the balance money before the owner could make the transfer which was not the initial understanding. This has created serious tension between us to the point that she has kept every information away from me. Even open secret accounts in which she transacted business. A friend in Addis has been giving me information as to the status of the business.
From all indication, she is attempting to hijack the business but all I am interested in is to recover my investment. I sent her couple of emails stating that she should return my investment and take over the business since that is her intention.
“I took this decision because when ever I call for financial statement, she refuse to do so and my contact told me about the secret accounts. She also do money transfer between Ethiopia and USA by giving money to people’s relatives in Ethiopia and the funds pay to her account in the USA, which is fund generated from the quarry sales. I have asked Engineering friends in Ethiopia to talk to her, even her sister in Atlanta ( HanaAlemayhu ), but she has refused to listen.”
“I have hired a Law firm in the USA to file law suit against Martha. Upon the delivery of a formal letter of complaint to Martha, she has gone underground and nowhere to be found in more than four (4) months,” in a rather frustrated state of mind he told this news outlet.