The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, has arraigned Nkereuwem Etukudoh and Henry Oyibo, before Justice D.V. Agishi of the Federal High Court, Jos on a six-count charge bordering on conspiracy and obtaining money by false pretence.
Etukdoh is alleged to have in 2014, as Provost, Federal School of Medical Laboratory Technology, FSMLT, Plateau State, perpetrated the fraud with Oyibo, a Desk Officer in the Budget Office of the Federation.
They are alleged to have diverted about N4.2 million obtained from the Federal Government under the pretext of organizing a Budget Preparation Training for the Account/Budget Call Officers of FSMLT.
The offence contravenes Section 8 (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Related Offences Act, 2006, and is punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act.
One of the charges reads: “That you, Dr SUNDAY NKEREUWEM ETUKODOH being the Provost and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal School of Medical Laboratory Technology, Jos and Ilemona Henry Oyibo being the Desk Officer in the Budget Office of Federation, on or about the 29th day of December, 2014 in Jos, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, with intent to defraud obtained the sum of N1,138,900 (One Million, One Hundred and Thirty-Eight Thousand Nine Hundred Naira) from the Federal Government of Nigeria via Account No: 1004577071 domiciled at Zenith Bank, Plc in the name of Ilemona Henry Oyibo, under the pretence that the said amount is consultant fee for organising Budget Preparation Training for the Account/ Budget Call Officers of the Federal School of Medical Laboratory Technology, Jos which pretence you knew to be false and thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 1 (1) (a) of the Advance Fee Fraud and Other Fraud Related Offences Act, 2006 and punishable under Section 1 (3) of the same Act”.
Both defendants pleaded “not guilty” to the charges.
Counsel for the first defendant, Solomon Umoh, SAN prayed the court to grant his client bail “pursuant to Section 35 and 36 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 and Sections 158, 159 and 162 of the ACJA 2015”.
Prosecuting counsel, Y.Y. Tarfa, opposed the application for bail, arguing that the defendant may jump bail.
Martin Atojoko, counsel for Oyibo, however, countered Tarfa’s opposition, arguing that “the second defendant adhered to all the conditions of the bail terms by the respondent, EFCC” prior to the arraignment.
Justice Agishi, thereafter, adjourned to November 19, 2018 for ruling on the bail application, and ordered that the defendants be remanded in prison custody.
Etukudoh is also facing similar charge before Justice D. D. Longji of the Plateau State High Court, where he, alongside Yusuf Samuel, Accountant, FSMLT; Ernest Demtoe, Secretary of Tenders Board, FSMLT; Goodluck Echewa and Esio-Udoh, both contractors of FSMLT, are being prosecuted for a 15-count charge of conspiracy, diversion of funds to the tune of N359 million.