The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) will on Friday arraign a controversial official of the Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Philomina Chishe and five others for trial over alleged N35million fraud.
Chieshe was alleged to have told operatives of the anti-graft commission that a snake swallowed the cash in question.
The other five officials facing trial are Samuel Umoru, Yakubu Jekada, Daniel Agbo, Priscilla Ogunsola, and Aliyu Yakubu.
All the suspects will be tried by Justice Peter Afen of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court in Abuja,
A brief on the case reads: “Philomena, who is a JAMB official in Benue State, became popular when she made an outlandish claim that a mysterious snake swallowed about N35million cash arising from sale of e-JAMB cards in the state.
“The controversial JAMB official is being prosecuted by the EFCC on an eight-count charge, following her refusal to furnish the management of JAMB the true information on the financial status of JAMB e-cards supplied to the Benue Zonal office between 2014 and 2016.
“Instead of Philomena rendering account on the said N35million, being the shortfall of unremitted e-JAMB cards in connivance with other officials, she claimed that a mysterious snake swallowed the money.
“According to the EFCC, Philomena ought to know that the shortfall in the unremitted e-JAMB cards, which she claimed disappeared as a result of manipulation from the kingdom of darkness is false and untenable before the law.
“The commission added that the action of Philomena was contrary to section 139 (a) of the Penal Code Law.
“The commission has also arraigned another JAMB official, Labaran Tanko, on Tuesday while the defendant pleaded not guilty to the offence.”
The EFCC gave insights into how the fraud was uncovered and those involved.
Another document said: “The remittance of over N8billion by the Registrar of JAMB, Prof. Ishaq Oloyede to the Federal Government as revenue led to the Forensic Investigation of Financial Activities of JAMB between 2010 and 2016 by Faithpro Consulting Auditing Associate (Financial and Management Consultants).
“The forensic investigators came up with N8.7billion shortfall within the same period which the EFCC has been investigating. There are about 15 suspects who may face trial in the first batch.”
According to the document, the fraud bordered on alleged diversion of revenue from the sales of e-facility cards and change of course cards.
Some of the states where the fraud was detected, include Benue, Nasarawa, Kano, Kogi, Plateau, Gombe, Yobe and Edo.
Some of the suspects under investigation, who may face trial, include Chise and Sale Umar(Benue); Labaran Tanko(Nasarawa); Daniel Agbo(Kogi), Yakubu Jekada(Plateau), Patricia Ogunsola and Cyril Izireim Imoukhuede(Edo); Murtala Abdul(Gombe); Aliyu Yakubu(Kano) among others.