Abuja – The Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) said it arrested 41 officials with fake credentials at a promotion exercise conducted by the National Identification Management Commission (NIMC).
This is contained in a statement signed by the ICPC’s Head of Media, Mr Folu Olamiti, and made available to newsmen on Thursday in Abuja.
According to the statement, the arrest was made during the presentation of additional certificates claimed to have been acquired by the officials for upgrading of their status.
The statement said that the preliminary vetting carried out by NIMC through the Ministry of Education indicated that some of the tertiary institutions contacted to verify their certificates, confirmed the certificates to be fake.
It added that some were altered and some were not graduates of the institutions they claimed.
“One of the suspects presented a certificate which was “doctored” to indicate Second Class degree rather than the earned Third Class degree.
“Others presented forged certificates whereas they still had pending carry-overs.
“Preliminary investigations by ICPC indicated that some of the certificates emanated from some of the illegal degree awarding mills and outreach centres recently sealed by ICPC,’’ the statement said.
It said that the commission was further probing the complicity of those involved in the graduation of one of the suspects with a degree in Engineering from an approved university who could not express himself in writing.
ICPC advised tertiary institutions yet to respond to the earlier inquiries sent to them by the Federal Ministry of Education to do so immediately.
The statement quoted ICPC Chairman, Mr Ekpo Nta as commending NIMC Management for its zero tolerance for corruption in its workforce given the sensitive national assignment it was charged with.
The arrest and interrogation of the NIMC officials is coming in the wake of ICPC/NUC crack-down on illegal degree awarding mills nationwide. (NAN)