EFCC uncovers N100M fraud attempt in SUBEB account

By Uchino Amatey

The Cross River State Universal Basic Education Board (CR-SUBEB) has once again escaped the hands of fraudsters after an attempt to defraud the Board’s UBE Matching Grant account of N100M (One Hundred Million Naira) as recently uncovered by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) in Abuja.

The suspects, one Tom Sambo and his cohorts who forged the signature of the Executive Chairman and the Board Secretary on a bank transfer form met their waterloo in an attempt to transfer the money to a different account after the bank alerted the EFCC amid suspicion.

Condemning this fraudulent act, The Board Chairman, Dr Stephen Odey described it as a nefarious act perpetrated against the Board and the State Government. He added that, fraudulent activities such as this are calculated attempts to cause problems for the Board.

“See the length people go to commit crime, these people whom I do not know from anywhere forged my signature and that of the Board’s Secretary. If this was not uncovered by the EFCC, tomorrow people will carry stories that the money was withdrawn by the Executive Chairman,” he stated.

Dr Odey commended EFCC for their timely intervention to the situation and for swooping in to stall the fraudulent attempt on the account, thereby vindicating the Board. He said on several occasions EFCC has placed a lien on the Board’s Matching Grant account as a result of frivolous petitions.

On interrogation, one of the suspects, Tom Sambo said he has never met or seen neither the SUBEB Chairman nor the Board’s Secretary.

According to him “to the best of my knowledge and being honest, I have never seen or known any of them in any way, and they both don’t know me in anyway either,” he emphasized.
They suspects who are presently in EFCC detention apologized to the State and the Board while appealing for forgiveness.

“I apologise and kindly ask for your forgiveness towards my habit and action towards your personality and the entire State. Please use your heart and office to forgive my unlawful action,” he appealed.

Meanwhile, the Executive Chairman who is also a legal practitioner has maintained his transparency stance and has warned the general public to stay away from fraudulent activities, pledging that all those who refuse to do so will be made to face dire consequences.

This incident is coming barely two months after the Executive Chairman apprehended a fraudster in the State with four forged award letters for execution of projects amounting to N135 million (One Hundred and Thirty-Five Million Naira).

The EFCC is getting set to arraign these fraudsters in Court.
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