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Bursary fraud: Kwara Scholarship Board Officials forged 326 Student’s signatures

The trial of the immediate past Chairperson of the Kwara State Scholarship Board, Alhaja Fatimoh Yusuf, The Board’s Executive Secretary, Fatai Lamidi and Accountant, Stephen Ajewole continued on Wednesday 11th of March 2020 with the prosecution calling its second witness.

The Ilorin Zonal Office of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission ( EFCC) had on January 15 2020 arraigned the trio on a seven count charge before a Kwara State High Court Presided over by Justice Sikiru Oyinloye over their alleged involvement in bursary fraud to the tune of fifty million naira.

At the resumed hearing of the matter on Wednesday, the second prosecution witness, Abdulkareem Ismail, a former President of the National Association of Kwara State Students, Sokoto State Polytechnic stepped into the witness box.

Ismail in his evidence in Chief alleged that only fifty Students of Sokoto State Polytechnic benefited from the controversial bursary award from Kwara State Government while officials of the Scholarship board claimed they have pay for three hundred and thirty six Students.

“My Lord, on that day, when the Scholarship board officials arrived, it was during strike period, we did a head count, less than two hundred Students were on ground, the board officials disqualified many people, they said only fifty Students were eligible to collect the bursary.

“I was among the fifty persons that benefited from the bursary, they never asked us to append our signatures and I did not append my signature, I was invited by the EFCC last year, I was shown the list of beneficiaries submitted by the Board, I discovered that there were many irregularities”

The witness stated further that, “in the list shown me at the EFCC Office, three hundred and twenty six Students were paid as claimed by the Scholarship board, but the list was not true reflection of what happened, only fifty students were paid.

“The list submitted to the Scholarship board officials prior to the payment contained more details of Students bio data but the one generated by the Board was doctored ” Ismail said.

Justice Oyinloye after discharging the witness adjourned till 23rd of March 2020 for continuation of trial.

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