Education officials docked for alleged N97 million fraud

The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission, ICPC, has arraigned a staff of the Universal Basic Education Commission, UBEC, Donald Orya, and former Chairman of the Benue State Universal Basic Education Board SUBEB, Iho Achusa, for alleged fraud.

The two officers were accused of diverting N97 million belonging to the UBE. They were charged before a Benue State High Court on Friday.

A statement from ICPC’s spokesperson, Rasheedat Okoduwa, said Mr. Orya was accused of facilitating a personal interest for himself, amounting to N97. 5million from a contract awarded with UBE fund.

“That sometime between October and November 2013, the accused conspired to knowingly hold private interest in a contract awarded by Benue State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB) to Brown Sugar Global Resources Limited for training of teachers on ICT to the tune of N97,500,000.00 (Ninety Seven Million, Five Hundred Thousand Naira only) only and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 26(1)(c) punishable under Section 12 of the Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Act, 2000,” the charge read in part.

While Mr. Orya was charged for allegedly using his ties with Brown sugar to facilitate the contract for his benefit, the second accused, Mr. Achusa, was charged for allegedly collecting a bribe of N14.9 million to facilitate the transaction.

Mr. Achusa, however, questioned the viability of the charges against him.

Both suspects pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The court granted the defendants bail and the case was adjourned till November 14.

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