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Provost, Bursar bag 4 years jail term

30 January 2013, 10:03

Ibadan -  The Provost of the Federal Cooperative College, Eleyele, Ibadan, Ruth Aweto, was on Tuesday sentenced to four years imprisonment without an option of  fine  by the state High Court sitting in Ibadan.

 Also sentenced to four years imprisonment without option of fine was  the Bursar, Adekanye Komolafe.  

The duo were sentenced  by Justice Moshood Abass who found them guilty of four out of the eight-count charge of fraud leveled against them  by the Independent Corrupt Practices and other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).

The judge, however,  said the sentence would run concurrently on each of the four-count charge.

The convicts between  October 2005 and January 2006 were said to have  conspired to mislead the Federal Government  by submitting a defective budget proposal for the year 2006.

In the budget proposal, the convicts claimed that 41 casual workers  were permanent staff  of the college and entitled to N7million rather than the N3.7 million they were genuinely expected to collect.

Delivering his  three-hour judgment, the judge said the  prosecution had proven that both principal officers of the college betrayed the trust vested in them by government.

“You have used your positions to mislead and defraud the government of the money put under your custody for the smooth administration of the college,” he said.

The convicts had told the court that they agreed to present and submit the misleading budget proposal of N7million based on the fact that an interview had already been conducted for the said 41 casual staff.

The said interview was purportedly  conducted under the leadership of one Mr Ubedie in preparation for the  conversion of the casual workers to  full staff of the college.

The convicts, however, admitted not returning the balance of N3.3million to the coffers of the government, saying it was  used  to off-set the outstanding salaries of 2004.

Abass, however,  said that the convicts failed to show any document or give the  name of a superior officer of  the Federal Government who might have given them the authorisation to convert the balance as claimed.

NAN reports that the convicts committed an offence contrary to   Section 26 (1) ( c ) and punishable under Section 17 (1 ) ( c) of the ICPC Act 2000.

The judge said that although the offence carried a five-year jail term  without an option of fine, he took into consideration the fact that  they were both first time offenders.

NAN

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