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Many options are available for searching for people in Nigeria. Using Nigerian social media sites is usually the first option for many people, but sometimes it may not work as expected if people sought have not opened an account and volunteered their information. Neither search engines nor the search functions on social sites will be able to locate them.
The following are some reasons why you might find yourself searching for a missing person:
Debt: When someone does not pay a debt, they might want to disappear so that they do not have to repay the loan. You might find yourself looking everywhere for the person you lent money but not quite finding them. At this time you will need a little help and do some digging especially if the debt is significant. Remember that some people can grope you into cosigning loans for them and then they default. The lenders or the Nigerian government come for you or your property so you will need to find the debtor so that they can pay their loan.
Relations: There are a lot of cases of parents who are in search of their kids. There are even more about kids who are looking for their parents. In most cases they are people who came to know about their parents when they are grownups maybe because they were adopted or any other reason. For example a mum who gave up her kid for adoption for any reason might want to find them after some years. A person who comes to find out that they are adopted later in life might also want to know who their biological parents are.
Benefits and inheritance: Imagine if you heard that a friend or family member is to inherit a considerable amount of money or property you might want to find them and inform them of the good news. This is also a common reason to search for a sibling. Or someone who has not been in touch with the family for long. There are times when a parent also needs to find their son or daughter for the same purposes.
When looking for a lost person you need to ensure that you can afford it both financially and emotionally. Most private companies will give you a fee that they charge to help you find your lost loved one. You should however be mindful of any hidden charges like air fares gas and some might even need equipment like cameras.
Whenever a search does not seem to bear any positive results most people get emotionally affected and drained. You need to brace yourself for any kind of outcome and make sure that you are in the right place emotionally to take on any type of news. Remember that you will at times not find the person you are looking to find.
The first place most people go in search of loved ones is social media but it is important to note that not everyone is active online. In this case you might need to get creative and search in other areas; some of them are:
1. Churches and Mosques
If the missing person is religious you should look in churches or mosques near the places you think they live. Find out which church they belonged to when they were maybe back home and hang around for one or two Sundays you might just spot them. Ask the church leaders and frequent church attendees if anyone has seen them there.
2. Hospitals and Mortuaries
This option to most people is the last resort because everyone wants to believe that the person they are looking for is alive and healthy. Sometimes you just have to ask and see if there are any patients with no known relatives or bodies that are not known yet. People are sometimes found in a nearby hospital possibly due to injury disease or old age.
If you know the person's previous school you can get and ask for records. You can find useful information that might lead you directly to them. Find out who they hang out with most of the time and get to know their best friends. Some so many people share a lot with their friends. In some cases a best friend always turns out to know much more about a person. Sometimes more than even their siblings.
If they have school-going children then they must have enrolled them in one of the nearby schools. So you can find out if they are parents in any of them.
4. Prisons and Jails
In some cases the individual in question is likely to be serving time in jail and they might not have called relatives. Some people feel shame about telling their loved ones that they were committing a crime.
Some of these people prefer to do their time without having to see the disappointment in their families' faces when they are locked up in prison. While some did not get a chance to call their relatives from the police stations.
Nigerian cells can hold a person for up to one week before they are arraigned. Go to local police stations and see if they have any records of them. You will also find out what the charges are and in case you want to help out this is a great place to start.
5. Businesses and Markets
If a person is living in a town you know then you can be sure that they get their groceries in a local supermarket. The cashiers or business owners might have seen them once or twice. Ask in gas stations and show pictures so that it can be easy for someone to identify them. Locals in Nigeria love their cuisine and will go to the nearest market to purchase supplies.
6. Playgrounds and Parks
When you are looking for a person who has kids or pets you can check local parks because they will mostly be going to some. Show a picture to the mums and nannies you get in the playground because most of them know each other from spending time in the park. Nannies usually know almost everyone because they talk to each other and have probably worked in multiple homes in the area.
7. Local Restaurants and Bars
Many people visit local restaurants for dinners take outs and dates. Your loved one might even be regular in a local bar and if this is the case then the bartender must have seen them. Nigerians are known to be fun loving and social so be sure to ask in any eating and drinking places in the area.
8. Post Office
You will be surprised at how much the mailman knows about any neighborhood they go to many homes in a day and most likely get to meet everyone living there even once. You can ask them about the person you are in search of and you can be lucky to find them very quickly. If they have kids then you need to show their pictures too because the mailman might have seen them playing in the yard as he delivers their mail.
9. Bus and Cell Phone Companies
There is a possibility that the person you are trying to reach does not drive themselves to work and use a bus every day. If this is the case then the bus drivers in that route will remember them. The reason is that they interact every working day so consider asking the bus drivers about the individual and you can find them or information about where they board and alight from the bus daily.
With a bit of cooperation any cell service provider in Nigeria can help you track a person's whereabouts. Pay a visit to the cell phone company that they use and you can find prompt help.
10. Rehabilitation Centers
People struggling with drug use and addiction sometimes check themselves in rehab facilities without informing family or friends. Addicts feel ashamed of their life and might want to get clean before they rejoin the community. Most drug addicts wrong their loved ones and prefer to take time off to heal.
They will do all the work for you while you wait for reports and results of their findings.
They have sophisticated equipment to help you with your people search in case there is a need for any like cameras and many more.
Most of them might already know people in the estates who can help you with your search. They know most cities and some might even work with the police.
They work fast.
Some are very expensive.
A new PI can waste your time and money without getting tangible results because most Nigerian states are quite largely populated.
There are so many ways to search for people. With the advancement in technology it will even be more accessible for people to see each other. Information about anyone you are looking for will be available at any time. Some of the more sophisticated ways to search for people are:
Security cameras: There is a provision to install cameras in most Nigerian streets and public places finding a person is becoming easier.
Implanted chips: putting chips on humans and especially kids can help a lot in finding them if they go missing.
Facial recognition: With everyone's information and faces in the Nigerian database it will be easier to find anyone by just matching their faces and searching in cameras around the city or town.
When searching for lost people do not just run to online platforms alone because they might not help in some cases. Try to involve yourself and explore more diligently in other areas where no one would bother to look and you might be more successful. You should not be afraid of going out and physically walking the streets to find your loved one.