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N80bn ‘Fraud’: ASUU Mocks Accountant-General, Calls Him Corruption Personified

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has called on the federal government to immediately discard the use of the Integrated Payroll and Personnel Information System (IPPIS) meant for the payment of federal workers’ salaries and return to a platform where corruption can be checked step-by-step.

The union also charged the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to carry out a thorough investigation; also to take the Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris to court and ensure it pursues his case to a logical conclusion.

President of ASUU, Prof. Emmanuel Osodeke, who stated these in an exclusive interview with Daily Trust on Tuesday, disclosed that apart from shortchanging of ASUU members by the IPPIS, many of them are still owed salaries ranging between 8 to 13 months.

“We have said it over and over again that IPPIS is a fraud. We have also said that the Accountant-General’s office is a fraud, and they are just using IPPIS to relocate all the fraudulent activities to one centre which is the Accountant-General office and we have been vindicated. That is our position.

“This IPPIS, I can tell you as we speak, that many of our members have not been paid for up to 13 months but they are telling the government that they are using it to control corruption.

He continued, “The report of the Auditor-General of the Federation confirmed it but we have a country where we don’t listen to the intellectuals. Now, thank God they have vindicated us. We had exposed them in the AGF’s office before.

“Our branch in Bauchi had exposed all these things, how they were building things in Kano, Abuja, all over the places, building markets, building these, building that. What’s the salary of an Accountant-General? Less than N1 million in a month and you’re building so many things with your family all over the country.

“I repeat, we have been vindicated. That is what we had been saying, that the IPPIS which is the major thing he (Ahmed Idris) has been pushing, is just to make money,” Osodeke told our correspondent.

The Accountant-General of the Federation, Ahmed Idris, was arrested for N80bn alleged fraud while on his way to Kano on Monday.

Reacting to the development, the union leader called on President Muhammadu Buhari not to interfere in the case or allow any cover-up, saying corrupt people deserve punishment in line with this administration’s vision.

He stated, “We do hope that with this one, the federal government will have the courage to throw away the IPPIS, and go back to where we were, where we can check corruption on a step-by-step basis.

“Now, everything is done at the Accountant-General office and nobody checks them but thank God the EFCC has come out, listened to what we were saying and we have been vindicated.

“But we do hope that like we had been seen in the past, that before you know it with your smart lawyer, the man is released and then life is normal. We hope that will not happen this time.

“If you look at this country, there were people who have been tried for corruption in the past 10 years and nothing has happened to them. We know that. We hope that the EFCC will ensure a proper investigation is done, and the judges will ensure that the person is punished for what he has done.”

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BREAKING: Court Dismisses Nnamdi Kanu’s Bail Application

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The Federal High Court in Abuja has dismissed the application for bail by the detained leader of the Proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.

Justice Binta Nyako, in her ruling on Tuesday, said the suit was a gross abuse of the court process and an attempt to continue to litigate on issues that have already been ruled on.

She, however, advised the applicant to approach the Court of Appeal on the issue of bail, should he feel aggrieved by the decision of the court.

The trial judge stated that since the ruling in July 2017 when Kanu was granted bail till date, the suit has suffered 15 adjournments and the matter has yet to enter a substantive hearing.

She added that she was not satisfied with the reason the IPOB leader gave for his failure to appear in court for the continuation of his trial.

Justice Nyako stated that from the records of the court, Kanu was represented by his lawyer on the day his bail was revoked, likewise his sureties and he has never been denied a fair hearing.

She held that a court could vacate a previous order when confronted with a cogent and verifiable reason.

In the trial judge’s words, “In the instant case, I have not been given any, neither have I been given any reason to set aside the order.”

She insisted that the IPOB leader must explain the reason why he breached the previous bail that was given to him before he could enjoy another favourable discretion from it.

Thereafter, the case was adjourned until November 14 for mention and to await the outcome of Kanu’s appeal at the appellate court.

Tuesday’s ruling comes a month after the court declined to release the embattled IPOB leader on bail on May 18.

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Ekweremadu Takes NIMC, NIS to Court

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Former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, and his wife, Beatrice, have sued the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) and others over controversy surrounding David Ukpo’s real age.

Others mentioned in the suit are the Comptroller General (C-G), Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS); Stanbic-IBTC Bank; United Bank of Africa (UBA) and Nigeria Inter-Bank Settlement System Plc as 2nd to 5th respondents respectively.

Recall that Ekweremadu and his wife were, on Thursday, remanded in the UK police custody, after they were tried before the Uxbridge Magistrate Court for alleged conspiracy to facilitate the travel of Ukpo, alleged to be a minor, for organ harvesting.

The couple, however, denied the allegations and the court adjourned till July 7 for hearing.

But in an originating summon marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/984/2022, dated and filed June 27 by their counsel, Adegboyega Awomolo, SAN, before Justice Inyang Ekwo of a Federal High Court, Abuja, the Ekweremadus asked the court for an order directing the NIMC to supply them with the Certified True Copy (CTC) of the biodata information of David Nwamini Ukpo.

The applicants said Ukpo’s National Identification Number (NIN):19438077110, which is in the possession of the agency, should be produced for the purpose of facilitating the criminal investigation and tendering same to establish their innocence with respect to Ukpo’s age in the criminal charges against them before the Uxbridge Magistrate Court.

They also sought an order directing the NIS C-G to supply the applicants with the documents and application form of David Nwamini Ukpo in the possession of the 2nd respondent presented for the issuance of International passport No. BO0569974 for the purpose of assisting criminal investigation and issuing same before the Uxbridge Magistrate Court, UK until July 7 in the alleged criminal charge brought against the applicants.

The lawyer noted that documents being sought to be handed over to the applicants will support the applicants in their defence and establish their innocence of the charges in the interest of justice.

Also, Bright Ekweremadu, the elder brother of the lawmaker, in the affidavit deposed to, said Ukpo informed the couple that he was 21 years old, having been born in the year 2000 and was ready to help Sonia.

Justice Ekwo fixed July 1 for hearing of the matter.

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‘23 died of hunger, unhealthy conditions in Katsina IDPs camp’

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Twenty-three have died of hunger, high blood pressure and depression at the internally displaced persons (IDPs) camp in Jibia Local Government Area of Katsina State.

The chairman of the IDP camp, Sa’ad Salisu, disclosed this while speaking to some journalists in Jibia yesterday.

A record made available by the Jibia Development Association showed that at least 22,365 IDPs from Shimfida, Garin Maiwuya, Garin Zango, Garin Kwari (Farfaru) and Tsambaye villages live in Jibia town.

The IDPs are taking refuge at Government Girls’ Secondary School, Jibia

Salisu, who is also the chairman of the Shimfida Youth Development Association, said that at least 35 women had also given birth in the camp within the last four months, saying that the number could be even higher.

Another disturbing development as Salisu explained, was that the vast majority of the children both in the town and in the camp could not have access to education.

“We have over 3,000 children in this camp that left their communities with school uniforms but now cannot go to school because the government hasn’t provided a school for them in the camp,” he said.

Salisu then called on the state government to expedite action towards restoring security in their communities to enable them to return and continue with their farming activities.

In his reaction, the Jibia Local Government Chairman, Bishir Sabi’u, said the government had provided adequate relief materials to the IDPs.

“Fifteen bags of rice are being cooked for them in the camp daily. I do give them N200,000 weekly to support their daily activities in the camp,” he said.

 

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