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Facebook Marketplace rolls out in Nigeria

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(FILES) This file photo taken on August 28, 2019 shows the logo of US online social media and social networking service, Facebook displayed on a tablet. CHARLET / AFP)

As part of efforts to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 while boosting businesses, Facebook has launched a Marketplace in Nigeria to enable people to discover, buy and sell items from others in their local communities.

Available in South Africa, Ethiopia and Kenya, Nigeria joins the growing list of countries where people can simply tap on the Marketplace icon or visit www.facebook.com/marketplace to browse and search for items and sort based on distance or category.

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Speaking at the launch, the Head of Public Policy for Anglophone West Africa, Adaora Ikenze, said: “The launch of Marketplace in Nigeria further highlights our ongoing efforts in helping to boost buying and selling and connecting communities. This comes at a crucial time as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact people and businesses, and with many people buying and selling on Facebook, this will provide people with a convenient destination where they can discover new products, shop for things they want or find buyers for the things they are ready to part with.”

Explaining how selling works on Facebook Marketplace, Ikenze said when a seller lists an item on Marketplace, they create a public listing that can be seen by anyone on Facebook, which includes the news feed, Facebook search, Facebook groups or search engines, adding that sellers can simply take a photo of an item, enter a product name, description, price, confirm their location, select a category, and then post. Speaking further on tips to buying and selling responsibly on Facebook Marketplace, Ikenze said, items, products or services sold on Facebook must comply with the community standards, as well as the commerce policies, adding that sellers and merchants must comply with all applicable laws and regulations.

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She said for high-value items, the buyers must consider requesting a certificate of authenticity or proof of purchase, adding, “If you are not satisfied with an item’s condition or have doubts about its authenticity, you can decline to complete the purchase.

If the seller offers to ship the item rather than exchanging it in person, keep in mind that you may not have the opportunity to verify the item before completing your purchase.

Ikenze further added that transactions should be done in public places and not the sellers home; use cash, Cash on Delivery (COD) or person-to-person (P2P) payments; report a seller or listing if a seller or product violates Facebook Marketplace commerce policies, watch out for potential scams and protect your privacy by not sharing financial account information with buyers or sellers while ensuring their Facebook privacy settings are up-to-date.

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