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Police nab five suspects over alleged N21.5m pension scam in Bauchi

Five employees of the Local Government Pension Board, Bauchi State, have been arrested for alleged criminal conspiracy, breach of trust, misappropriation, forgery and fraud amounting to N21, 580,000.

The Spokesperson for the police in the state, Ahmed Wakil, disclosed this in a statement on Saturday.

He said the suspects were arrested following a petition to the state Commissioner of Police by the state governor, Bala Mohammed, through his Principal Private Secretary.

Those arrested, he said, included the auditor, computer operator and three other workers with the board.

Wakil explained that the suspects inserted seven illegal names of pensioners and fraudulently siphoned various sums of money for a period ranging from six to 36 months.

He said: “On September 12, 2020, at about 1pm, a letter of complaint was received from the office of the Executive Governor Bauchi State signed by Musa Mohammed Kirfi, PPS to the governor against the following suspects, Mohammed B. Mohammed — auditor of the board, Musa Bappayo — computer operator of the board and Samaila Musa, all employees of the Local Government Pension Board.

“The complaint was received through the office of Commissioner of Police for discrete investigation.

“When interrogated, the above-mentioned persons confessed to have inserted about seven illegal beneficiaries’ names into the pensions records fraudulently as Mohammed Namamu (aka Muhammadun Faiza, and Abubakar Muazu.

“These two were the candidates/beneficiaries introduced by Samaila Musa, Male, (38) of the Federal Low-Cost who inserted above-mentioned names and none of them is a civil servant in the state. They were found to have been receiving N65,000 and N85,000 monthly for 18 months which accumulated to N2,700,000.”

The police spokesperson also added that, “Yasir Sulaiman (37) who resides behind the Old Airport, had two candidates, for whom he received N320, 000 monthly for 23 months which accumulated to N7, 360,000.

“Similarly, Garba Bala, Male, (39) of Tirwun Bauchi who introduced two candidates had been receiving N300,000 monthly for 36 months, which accumulated to N10,800,000.”

Wakil added that Umar Mohammed Madara, (49) of Ibrahim Bako area of Bauchi, had one candidate, for whom he received N120,000 monthly for six months, which accumulated to N720,000.

“All the suspects have been arrested and investigation is in progress. Efforts are in top gear to arrest the other fleeing suspects,” he stated.

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