A 22-year-old commercial Keke rider, Auwalu Salisu, has said he was mocked by friends and other residents of his community for returning N15 million cash forgotten by a passenger in his tricycle.
The incident happened in the Haye Nasarawa Local Government Area of Kano State, where a Chadian passenger forgot a bag containing the amount after Salisu had conveyed him in his Keke.
Many people were shocked when the commercial tricyclist returned the money to the owner.
Salisu, a school dropout, has been receiving accolades and gifts for returning the money.
But, speaking while receiving a cash gift of N100,000 from the Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, for his honesty, Salisu said he was mocked by almost all his friends except a few that commended him for doing the right thing.
Narrating what happened, the tricyclist said he carried three passengers on Thursday from Badawa to Yan Kaba Motor Park in Kano.
However, while cleaning the Keke later, he discovered a bag inside tricycle.
He added that when he checked, he found it was filled with cash.
“I then rushed to our house and showed my mother. It was wads of foreign currency. My mother quickly informed my father, who also informed his elder brother.
“When they came to the house, they decided we should not announce finding the money on radio, but wait till the owner announced it.”
According to Salisu, two days after keeping the money with his mother, she heard the announcement concerning the missing money on Arewa Radio FM, Kano, and recorded the numbers given to contact the owners.
“I collected the numbers and called them five times but it was not answered. When I called the other number, it was picked at the third attempt. I spoke with the person and introduced myself as the tricyclist that carried them on Thursday.
“He was happy and arranged to meet at the Arewa Radio where they announced the missing money. We met there and they were happy. They gave me N400,000.
“I did that for the sake of God. I was even chided by my friends. They said I am mad for returning such amount of money.”
Although he said he was mocked for returning the money, Salisu urged his friends and other youths to follow his example.
“I call on my fellow youths to emulate me and be honest always,” he said.
Speaking while presenting the cash gift to Salisu, Dr Gwani Umar Farouk, the Chairman of ACF in Kano, said the organisation decided to honour the commercial tricyclist in order to showcase him as an example for other Nigerians.
According Farouk, the tricyclist exhibited the highest sense of honesty returning the money to the owner despite the economic challenges he is facing.
Farouk said, “It is not about the amount, it is the recognition ACF accorded to him. This boy has indeed exhibited the highest form of honesty because, despite his economic challenges, he returned the money.
“ACF would not only donate money to him, but involve him in its activities to serve as a lesson and example to his friends and youths in the country.”
Farouk added that Salisu’s action shows there is still hope in Nigerian youths, noting that the Keke rider has also elevated Kano and Nigeria’s integrity in the eyes of Chad and the world at large.